THE Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has said no bank in Nigeria shall retrench staff irrespective of their cadre.
The apex bank said in a press release that this is necessary to help mitigate the negative impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on families and livelihoods.
Earlier, the Managing Director of Access Bank had said in an interview that the bank would lay-off 75 per cent of its workforce which comprises mostly of junior workers.
A special meeting of the bankers’ committee was convened on May 2, by the CBN, to further review the implications of the COVID-19 pandemic on the Nigerian banking industry.
According to the apex bank, the committee particularly deliberated on the issue of the operating costs of banks in view of the disruptions emanating from the global economic difficulties.
CBN has, however, stated in the press release that banks will require its express approval before they can lay-off staff.
In an interview with The ICIR, Martins Kayode, a financial consultant said, “Some of the banks are scared they would run out of business in no time, so they want to push some workers out to save cost.”
But, according to Price Waterhouse Cooper (PWC), banks can help customers and businesses to pull through the crisis and emerge stronger once the outbreak eventually recedes.
The COVID-19 pandemic has brought the world into exceptionally difficult and largely uncharted waters, and banks are feeling the strains alongside their clients, their employees and the societies they serve.