CBN Directors’ Sack: Middle-Belt Group Alleges Lopsidedness

*Demands governors, NASS investigate the apex bank

Seriki Adinoyi in Jos

Conference of Autochthonous Ethnic Communities Development Association (CONECDA) has expressed concern over what it called the questionable manner the governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr. Yemi Cardoso, massively sacked Directors, Deputy Directors and Assistant Directors leaving some regions almost without representation in the bank.

Addressing the press in Jos, Plateau State, the groups spokesman, Mr. Paul Dekete, who observed that the North-central was worst hit by the sack, has demanded the National Assembly and governors of the affected states investigate the lopsidedness that characterized the sack.
He said: “The CBN’s purge extended beyond individual hardship, raising serious concerns about ethnic bias. Reports indicate that some states saw over 80% of their executive staff removed, with North Central and South Eastern regions disproportionately affected. This blatant disregard for the principle of federal character raises troubling questions about the bank’s commitment to national unity.

“The nature of the sack shows an attempt to cripple the Middle-belt region  as Gombe, Plateau and Benue are affected most. In Gombe State, five (5) people cutting across Deputy Directors to Assistant Directors cadre were all dismissed courtesy the re-organization of the bank. In Plateau, 80% of the staff in the executive cadre were sacked, including one who had 3 days to retire and arrangements had been concluded for her normal retirement.

“Benue is not spared either, as a number of Deputy Directors are affected. Very painful is that Mr. Onoja Ameh who was transferred from Abuja to Awka Branch last year December was involved in a terrible accident in April this year during which he almost lost his life on his way back to Awka after visiting his family in Abuja is still recuperating when he got sacked. A widow who is currently nursing her trauma was also sacked from the region due to “re-organisation” of the bank.”

Dekete said that the mass disengagement of the bank’s experienced staff, has left many questioning the its future stability, lamenting that a staggering 16 critical departments were gutted, with directors summarily dismissed and ordered to leave the premises the same day without usual handover procedures, leaving a gaping hole in the bank’s operational capacity.

Further according to him, “The purge wasn’t limited to high-level executives. It extended far beyond directors, impacting Deputy Directors and Assistant Directors who formed the backbone of departmental operations. These were not junior staff; they were seasoned professionals with deep institutional knowledge.

“For example, the Director of Information Technology was overseeing crucial projects on the very day they were terminated, including efforts to secure international information security certifications for the bank.

“In a particularly egregious case, a director on special assignment, tasked with leading the bank’s efforts to secure an ISO certification for information security, was sacked on the very day the bank successfully achieved this crucial milestone.

“The mass sack violated the bank’s own HR policy, which mandates board approval for executive terminations. This blatant disregard for due process has raised serious questions about transparency. The CBN, a federal institution, must adhere to public service rules. This dismissal exercise, carried out without board approval, lacks a solid legal foundation.”

He said that no clear criteria were offered for the mass sack, warning that such is a stark departure from the bank’s established culture of clear communication with staff during downsizing exercises.

Dekete said that loyal employees, some with over 30 years of dedicated service, were cast aside with a cold, impersonal letter stating “your services are no longer required”, lamenting that the human cost of this heartless exercise is staggering.

“Many staff members had used their salaries as collateral for loans tied to their remaining years of service at the CBN. With their abrupt termination, these loans were immediately deducted from their final paychecks, leaving some with nothing and others still indebted to the bank. The impact on these individuals and their families is devastating, with their dreams and financial security shattered in an instant,” he revealed.

He said that CBN’s actions demand a clear course of correction as experts have suggested: “The bank’s internal stability is inextricably linked to the wider Nigerian economy. The CBN’s core mandates, from price stability to fostering a stable financial system, are all delivered through the expertise and dedication of its staff. A demoralized and depleted workforce can have a crippling effect on the bank’s ability to deliver on these crucial objectives.”

CONECDA urged the bank to follow established procedures for staff reduction as laid out in its HR manual and best practices worldwide, adding that the insensitive termination letters should be withdrawn and replaced with more appropriate documentation that reflects the employees’ work records.

It called on the governors of these regions to as a matter of urgency step in to unravel the mystery behind the motive with a view to correcting it. It also asked that a fair compensation to mitigate the economic hardship they face be paid to the affected staff.

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