- Job Losses Extend to Expatriates in Multinationals
The wind of redundancy sweeping across the labour force in the country has affected expatriates employed in multinational companies, investigations have revealed.
It was learnt that most of the affected expats, who were majorly citizens of India, China, the United Kingdom and the United States, were employed in the food and beverage sector as well as the oil and gas sector.
According to sources, while some of the expatriates have been disengaged, others have simply been redeployed to the home countries or other nations where the companies are in operation.
As a cost-cutting measure, many employers have embarked on massive sacking of workers, a move which labour unions have vehemently opposed.
Findings revealed that many employers that could not sack their workers resorted to slashing of salaries and/or allowances.
The drop in oil prices and the country’s output has affected Nigeria, whose revenue generation is 90 per cent dependent on oil, adversely impacting its foreign exchange inflow. The scarcity of forex to import raw materials has caused many manufacturers to record low capacity utilisation and reduce their workforce.
A source in a foremost oil and gas servicing company said that 90 per cent of the expatriates in the company had been asked to go in the past year, with the firm said to have saved about 40 per cent of its annual expenses as a result.
Some employers, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said that they were forced to declare redundancy on account of the poor state of the economy, adding that the move affected both junior and managerial employees as well as Nigerians and foreigners.
The country officially plunged into recession in August 2016, when the National Bureau of Statistics released the Gross Domestic Product result for the second quarter. The economy shrank by 0.36 per cent in the first quarter and 2.06 per cent in the second quarter. The GDP growth rate weakened to -2.24 per cent in the third quarter and recorded a modest improvement to close the fourth quarter at -1.30 per cent.
An official of an International Oil Company operating in the country said that the expatriation had been going on in the past four years in line with the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry Content Development Act, 2010.
The Act seeks to increase indigenous participation in the oil and gas industry by setting, among other things, minimum thresholds for the utilisation of local manpower, services and goods in order to stimulate growth of indigenous firms.
However, the source said since there were limited resources to cater to the needs of foreign workers, the quota scheduled to be repatriated in 2016 was increased.
According to the source, transportation, salaries and security expenses on expatriates have greatly reduced.
He said, “Some of them are redeployed to their countries. Virtually all the oil companies were put on a plan to gradually reduce the number of expatriates and that plan has been on in the last four years, because of the Nigeria local content law.
“Some companies, which had plans to repatriate 50 expatriates every year, increased it to 75 when the recession came. But 50 were actually programmed to leave. This has reduced personnel and logistics costs related to the expatriates. For those on rotation, for example, who fly in every two months, we are not bearing that cost again and for those who need security, we don’t spend on that anymore.”
For ongoing projects, the source said Nigerian workers were made to occupy the vacated positions of the expatriates, while the expats for discontinued projects were simply sent away from Nigeria.
One of the expats who was disengaged in 2016 by Ace Loggers Nigeria Limited, a subsidiary of Sterling Oil Exploration & Energy Production Company Limited, Mahaveer Singh, alleged that the company had dispensed with the services of some foreigners in it employment without regard to the three-month notice stated in their appointment letter.
Singh, an Indian expat, who was recruited in October 2014, was disengaged in May 2016.
However, it was gathered that some IOCs had refused to comply with the local content law and had embarked on the recruitment of expatriates to replace Nigerian workers.
The Chairman, Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria, ExxonMobil branch, Mr. Paul Eboigbe, said that the ongoing separation of workers in Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited had not in any way affected the expatriates.
Rather, he explained that more foreigners were brought into the company in the past year to take up the jobs of Nigerian workers, mainly in the security and marine departments of the company.
Eboigbe said, “The separation that is going on started in December last year and the union had been resisting it. It is not concluded yet. They brought in many to the security and marine departments to take over the work of many Nigerian workers. The salaries and allowances of one of them can pay the salaries of 20 workers.
“What is going on now is that they are filling up the managerial positions with expatriates and removing Nigerian managers. We hope it will be concluded amicably and the company moves on peacefully.”
To check the violation of the expatriate quota, the House of Representative had last year directed oil and gas companies applying for expatriate quota to get approval from the Nigeria Content Development Management Board before forwarding their applications to the Ministry of Interior.
Seplat Appoints Emeka Onwuka as CFO, Executive Director
Seplat Named Emeka Onwuka as CFO and Executive Director
Seplat Petroleum Development Company Plc has appointed Mr. Emeka Onwuka as the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and Executive Director of Seplat, effective from August 1, 2020.
In the statement signed by Mrs. Edith Onwuchekwa, Company Secretary and Chief Governance Compliance Officer, and released through the Nigerian Stock Exchange, Mr. Onwuka has more than 30 years of experience in financial services within Sub-Saharan Africa.
“He has acted as the voice and face of major financial institutions in Nigeria as former Group Managing Director /CEO of Diamond Bank Plc and former Chairman of Enterprise Bank Limited. Mr Onwuka is a Partner at Andersen Tax Nigeria and holds various Board positions as Chairman; FMDQ Securities Exchange Limited; Director FMDQ Holdings Limited; Director, Ecobank Nigeria Limited; and Director, Bharti Airtel Nigeria,” the Company stated.
“Mr Onwuka received his B.SC. in Political Science from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka and holds an MBA from the University of Benin. He is a Chartered Accountant, a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria, a Fellow of Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria. He has attended executive programs at the Lagos Business School, Wharton Business School and Harvard Business School.
“Mr. Onwuka holds the Nigerian National Honour, Officer of the Order of the Niger (OON). The Board of Seplat is confident that the wealth of knowledge and experience he brings will be a great addition to the Company.
“This announcement is being made in accordance with Rule 4 of the Nigerian Stock Exchange Amended Listing Rules.”
TAJBank Joins e-Commerce Giants- Launches Nigeria’s 1st Ethical Online Mall
TaJBank Launches Ethical Online Mall
Abuja Nigeria July 8th, 2020 Nigeria’s most innovative Non-Interest Bank, TAJBank, has announced the highly anticipated launch of TAJMall, the nation’s first ethical online shopping mall.
The highly anticipated launch of the e-commerce site, which held recently, is coming closely on the heels of the commencement of its Agency Banking Network which began in June across thirteen (13) states in the country.
To celebrate this milestone, the brand will be holding a week long TAJMall campaign from 6th – 11th July 2020 to sensitize and also reward its new customers to its platform.
“This is a great milestone as we present a fully customer focused e- commerce platform offering 100 percent authentic brands from highly vetted vendors. Our mission is to rebuild trust in the online shopping niche, hence the emphasis on our platform being an ethical shopping mall. We want to deliver on our promise and make this an enjoyable and safe experience not just for our customers, but also for our numerous trusted vendors as well,” said Founder/COO TAJBank, Hamid Joda.
“Our customers place absolute trust that goods will be delivered exactly as requested, and we do not take that trust lightly, he added.
The brand expressed commitment to continuously deploy technological tools on it’s new e- platform to maintain optimal customer service delivery and ensure shopping on TAJMall remains a productive and hassle free experience.
Customers who log onto the tajmall.ng platform (or download the app), will have the opportunity to enjoy massive price slashes, shopping coupons, free shipping and other incredible offers. The Bank also intends to offer financing to its customers who shop on the mall.
“Well beyond our exciting line up of activities, they are assured the highest level of value each time they make a purchase on TAJMall. Our marketing insights have shown that there is an increasing need to match the kind of variety in product offerings that customers yearn for with the exceptional shopping experience that may at times be lacking. We aim to make that an unmatched experience right from the moment our customers visit our mall to the receipt of their items,” affirmed Co-Founder/CMO, Mr Sherif Idi.
Customers shopping on TAJ Mall are guaranteed 100% authenticity, official warranties from the brands, and a 5 day return policy at no extra cost to the customer.
Warren Buffet to Give Out Another $2.9bn, Total Donations Now $37bn
Warren Buffet Gives Away $2.9bn, Total Donations Now $37bn
Oracle of Omaha, Warren Buffet, has announced his yearly charitable donations to the five philanthropies he picked to donate most of his fortune to.
The billionaire plans to give out 15.9 million class B shares of Berkshire Hathaway worth $2.9 billion to the five philanthropies. This will bring his total philanthropic donations to $37 billion since 2006.
Buffet, who has promised to give away about 99 percent of his fortune, still hold 248,734 Class A shares of Berkshire valued at around $67.5 billion.
However, before he began given out his shares, Oracle of Omaha held 474,998 Class A shares of Berkshire, which would have worth about $129 billion as of today.
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