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JUST IN: CBN, Banks Suspend Staff Lay-Off

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Godwin Emefiele

The Central Bank of Nigeria and the banks in the country have agreed to shelve the planned sack of workers in the banking sector as a result of the pandemic.

This was contained in a statement on Sunday by the apex bank’s Director, Corporate Communications, Isaac Okorafor.

The Presidential Task Force Team on COVID-19 had said last week that banks would be allowed to re-open for commercial operations as the lockdown eases in parts of the country effective Monday, May 4.

Some banks had proposed the idea of downsizing their workforce as they plan to recommence operations, a decision that has met public outcry.

But the apex bank said it convened a meeting with the banks to review the economic impact the proposed action would have on workers and their families, especially at such a difficult time.

It said, “A special meeting of the Bankers’ Committee was convened on May 2, 2020, to further review the implications of the COVID-19 pandemic on the Nigerian banking industry. The Committee particularly deliberated on the issue of the operating costs of banks in view of the disruptions emanating from the global economic difficulties and decided as follows:

“In order to help minimize and mitigate the negative impact of the COVID19 pandemic on families and livelihoods, no bank in Nigeria shall retrench or lay-off any staff of any cadre (including full-time and part-time).

“To give effect to the above measure, the express approval of the Central Bank of Nigeria shall be required in the event that it becomes absolutely necessary to lay-off any such staff.

“The Central Bank of Nigeria solicits the support of all in our collective effort to weather through the economic challenges occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic.”

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