Access Bank to Sack 75% of Contract Staff
By Adedapo Adesanya
Access Bank Plc may be on course to be the first bank in Nigeria to embark on a massive job cut due to the impact of the coronavirus-induced lockdown.
In a video circulating on the social media, which was probably leaked from what appeared to be a private meeting with employees of the bank, Mr Herbert Wigwe, the Group Managing Director of Access Bank, noted that the bank may be considering a large scale retrenchment.
Mr Wigwe, who spoke via video conferencing in the meeting with the bank’s staff, said those likely to be affected by the mass retrenchment are 75 percent of the bank’s staff, most of whom are outsourced and are offering non-essential services.
“We probably don’t need as many security men as required, even to the fact that we are not gonna have all our branches open between now and December.
“We don’t need all the tea girls. We don’t need all the cleaners. We don’t need all the tellers etc,” Mr Wigwe said in the video making the rounds as at Thursday, April 30, 2020.
“The second has to do with our operational cost. Now that is one that is very tricky and it is tricky because I do understand and appreciate that its gonna, you know, bring its own pain to staff.
“We basically have to make the adjustments the same way you sounded when we spoke 10 days ago with respect to basically cutting down cost.
“I will be the first to take the hit and I’m gonna take the largest pay cut, which would be as much as 40 percent. The rest we would have to cascade right through the institution. Everybody may have to make some adjustments of some sort.” he said.
This has since sparked controversies, with many saying that the job loss will affect the most vulnerable of the bank which is considered one of the Big Five in the country.
Others have criticised the planned retrenchment and see it as an anathema to the bank’s fight at the forefront of the CACOVID coalition, to which Mr Wigwe has donated over N1 billion on behalf of the bank alongside other top players in the Nigerian private sector.