The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has ordered all banks not to retrench workers.

A statement from the apex bank signed by Mr. Isaac Okorafor Director, Corporate Communications said the CBN, Bankers’ Committee decided to suspend lay-offs in banks.

Access Bank has been trending in the media after an alleged video of a town hall meeting between the Managing Director of the bank Herbert Wigwe and the staff.

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In the video, Wigwe was heard informing staff of the bank that some contract staff of the bank will be laid off while other staff will have their salaries cut.

Following the backlash that greeted the video, the CBN on Sunday stated: “In order to help minimise and mitigate the negative impact of the COVID-19 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).”

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This decision the CBN said was taken “following special meeting of the Bankers’ Committee on May 2, 2020, to further review the implications of the COVID-19 pandemic on the Nigerian banking industry.”

The Committee, the CBN noted “deliberated on the issue of the operating costs of banks in view of the disruptions emanating from the global economic difficulties.”

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At the end of the deliberations, it was also decided that “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.”

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