By Achadu Gabriel, Kaduna
The 324 terminated staffs of Bank of Agriculture, BOA, with headquarters in Kaduna, have finally resolved to go to court to seek redress for alleged unpaid severance.
The bank has, however, stood its ground – stating that it has nothing to pay the sacked staffs more than the severance benefits paid them earlier, which amounts to 1.1bn.
The sacked staffs, numbering about four, disclosed this to journalists in Kaduna after meeting with chairman of Nigeria Union of Journalists, Kaduna state council, Comrade Adamu Yusuf.
Speaking to journalists in Kaduna, spokesperson of the five interviewed sacked staffs, Jacob Dangana, said some senior managerial staffs, who were sacked three months before their termination, suffered the same fate, and were paid by the new salary structure when they went to court.
But Mr. Oluremi Olaoye, the head of Corporate Affairs Communication, told NUJ chairman that “they have nothing to settle us again;” that, “if we have any other case, we should go to court.”
“Eighty-three (83) senior staffs sacked 3 months before us went through the same thing that’s happened to us; they went to court and the management staff called them and paid them their entitlements, based on the new salary structure, and the least person got nothing less than N20 million to N30 million.
“Before then, they were paid by the new salary structure, and the least was about N6 million that was paid to them. When we remind them, they said the management staff can decide to pay us in any salary structure they want,” they lamented.
Olaoye, however, denied allegation when contacted, saying the bank did not pay based on any structure as being speculated by the sacked staff. On what will be the net line of action, the affected staff said they appealed to the legal representative on the option of going to court as opined by the bank staff.
The sacking of the 324 staffs occurred since 2011, and the exercise has continued to drag back-and-front, between the bank and the sacked staffs till yesterday, with the sacked staff alleging they have been replaced with children of the top management staff of the BOA after being unjustly terminated from the office.
BOA management staff led by Managing Director (MD,/CEO), Alhaji Kabir Mohammed Adamu, said the bank spent N1.1bn to settle the severance of the terminated staffs, but the affected persons disagreed, saying, they were paid by old salary structure even when they enjoyed new structure, while in office, as salary before their unjust termination.
Contacted, the bank spokesperson said the detail will be made available to journalists the next day in full.