The Abuja Chamber of Commerce and Industry on Monday blamed the massive retrenchment in the banking sector on the implementation of the Treasury Single Account.
The chamber, while reacting to the gale of job losses in the banks in recent times, called on the Federal Government to come up with measures to assist the financial institutions rather than directing them to stop firing their workers.
The PUNCH had last week reported that Ecobank Nigeria sacked over 1,040 of its employees, while Diamond Bank Plc also retrenched over 200 members of its workforce.
In the same vein, FBN Holdings, the parent company of First Bank of Nigeria Limited, recently said it would prune the number of its employees by 1,000.
As a result of the development, the Minister of Labour and Productivity, Dr. Chris Ngige, had on Friday directed the banks to stop the retrenchment exercise.
The minister further directed that all the retrenchments done in the past four months should be put on hold pending the outcome of a proposed stakeholders’ summit for employers and employees of the banking, insurance and financial institutions scheduled for the first week of July.
“Following the high spate of petitions and complaints from stakeholders in the banking, insurance and financial institutions, I hereby direct the suspension of the ongoing retrenchment in the sector pending the outcome of the conciliatory meetings in the industry,” Ngige had said.
But the President, ACCI, Mr. Tony Ejinkeonye, told our correspondent that the implementation of the TSA had left the banks with severe liquidity problems, which had made them to reduce their workforce in a bid to survive.
He said, “The current retrenchment in the financial services sector as witnessed in some Nigerian Money Deposit Banks could be attributed to the adverse implication of the Single Treasury Account policy of the Federal Government.
“The implementation of Federal Government’s Treasury Single Account policy has left the banks with severe liquidity problem, causing the financial houses to cut their workforce so as to remain in business.
“We call on the Government at this time not to play politics with the job-cut crises in the banking sector, as full employment remains the topmost in the list of macroeconomic objectives of any government.
Source:© Copyright Punch Online