Bankers Stage Protest Against Unlawful Dismissals

The Association of Senior Staff of Banks, Insurance, and Financial Institutions (ASSBIFI) has taken a stand against the management of Heritage Bank Plc. They have expressed strong disapproval of the recent dismissals of their members from the bank, citing a lack of proper procedure and compensation.

Since May 30, the union has reported the dismissal of over 30 of its members, including a Principal National Officer, without just cause or benefits. These actions are considered a direct violation of labor laws, including Section 20 of the Labour Act, Cap L1, LFN 2004, the ASSBIFI Industry Wide Collective Agreement, and the ILO Convention 158 on Termination of Employment.

Olusoji Oluwole, the President of ASSBIFI, expressed frustration at the bank’s repeated unfair labor practices against Nigerian workers. Despite ASSBIFI’s efforts to resolve these issues through dialogue and negotiation, the management of Heritage Bank persisted in terminating employment based on their company policy, without engaging with the union, as required by law.

The employees who were terminated had dedicated between five and 25 years of service to the bank and were let go without valid reasons or proper severance benefits. ASSBIFI considers this exploitation and injustice of the highest order.

Furthermore, the association expressed concerns over the financial health of Heritage Bank, as recent reports have raised doubts about its stability. ASSBIFI now questions the safety of several Nigerian workers who have their salaries deposited in the bank.

In light of the management’s continued refusal to address these issues in an amicable and fair manner, ASSBIFI has decided to mobilize its networks and contacts to protect the rights and privileges of its members in Heritage Bank. They call on the bank to rectify the situation and uphold the rights of the affected employees.

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