Retrenchment frenzy: Saraki summons Ngige for threatening banks


With continued retrenchments across the nation, the Senate President, Bukola Saraki has summoned the Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige over his threat to sanction and withdraw licences of banks that sack their staff.

The development was sequel to a motion of personal explanation by the Chairman, Senate Committee on Banking and other Financial Institutions, Senator Rafiu Ibrahim, over the threat by the Minister of Labour and Productivity, Senator Chris Ngige, to revoke the licenses of banks that ignored Federal Government’s directive on retrenchments in banks.

Senator Ibrahim explained to the Senate that the minister was widely reported to have threatened in far away Geneva, Switzerland! that banks that ignored government’s directive not to sack workers should expect sanction, including revoking their operating license. He noted that any misguided statement or directive has the capacity of a throwback on the industry.

He added that it should equally be appreciated that certain statement could create a run of the banks. “Without any prejudice to the position of the minister, we want, as the Chairman Senate Committee on Banking, Insurance and other Financial institutions for us to invite the minister, the Central Bank and the banks to know if they are talking at all about retrenchment and what will happen,”he said.

He added that all the banks in the country are private companies or unquoted companies. “So we want to know the basis of the directive and now the basis of the threat,” he said. Senate President, Bukola Saraki, who granted the request, said Senator Ibrahim brought the matter to him.

Saraki said: “Senator Rafiu Ibrahim brought this matter to me and he has come under personal explanation of which there would be no further debate.” He said that those invited should appear before the committee.

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