Sen. Nwoko chides CBN for mass termination of 317 staff


May 26, 2024

Nwoko, in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Sunday in Abuja, described the development as a breach of the social contract between the government and its citizens.

He emphasised the need for job security and adherence to due process and therefore called on the CBN to immediately reinstate the affected employees.

Nwoko said that this was pending a comprehensive and transparent review of the circumstances surrounding their termination, involving consultations with relevant stakeholders, including labor unions and employee representatives.

The lawmaker also called on the Senate to mandate its committees on Employment, Labour and Productivity, as well as that of Public Service Matters to investigate the mass terminations.

He urged, ‘The committees should focus on the rationale behind these decisions, their compliance with labor laws, and their broader socio-economic impact, and propose measures to prevent such occurrences in the future.”

According to him, between March 15 and April 11, 2024, the CBN had terminated the employment of approximately 117 staff members, causing significant concern and distress among the affected employees and the general public;

“Also on May 24, the CBN sacked an additional 200 staff members, bringing the total number of terminated employees to more than 317 within a short span.

“These terminations affected directors, deputy directors, assistant directors, principal managers, senior managers, and lower-ranking staff;

“The termination letters issued to the affected staff, including one dated May 24, from the Human Resources Department, cited the need to reorganise the organisation for effective operations as the reason for the sack.

“However, the letters lacked proper authorisation, being unsigned, and failed to provide a detailed and transparent justification for the mass terminations,” Nwoko said.

He further noted that the policy of re-organisation, as mentioned in the termination letters, had been ”vaguely communicated” under the new strategic direction of the apex bank.

Nwoko quoted the latter as stating, “the new strategic direction of the bank has been widely publicised in line with our new mission and vision.

”The bank is currently undergoing a significant organisational and human capital restructuring process.”

He said that the letter, however, did not offer specific reasons for the dismissal of each staff member;

Nwoko said, k”I am therefore concerned that the principles of fairness and justice, which are the foundation to the nation, are compromised when employees are dismissed without due process and transparent justification.

“The abrupt and sweeping nature of these terminations, without clear allegations of wrongdoing against the affected staff, raises serious questions about social justice and equity.

“I am also deeply concerned that the Nigerian economy is currently facing numerous challenges, including high unemployment rates.

”The sudden termination of more than 317 staff members from the CBN will further exacerbate economic instability and uncertainty among Nigerian families.

“I am therefore mindful that the government and its institutions are fundamentally responsible for providing employment and essential services to the public.”

According to him, such mass terminations are contrary to these obligations, especially when the employees have not been accused of any wrongdoing.


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