Ex PHCN, NEPA workers seek payment of benefits, severance packages

Some former staff of the defunct National Electric Power Authority (NEPA) and Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) have lamented the hardship they are facing due to their withheld benefits and severance packages by Federal Government through the Bureau of Public Enterprise (BPE).

The affected staff, who were laid off in 2013, demanded payment of all their benefits and severance packages through implementation of report of a committee headed by erstwhile labour leader, Hassan Sunmonu.

Speaking in Ibadan on behalf of of the affected staff, Olusegun Iyanda said the benefits include ten percent equity share of power industry to every employees, pre retirement training within and outside the country which was said to be monetised, contributory pension, insurance and other things as recommended by the Sumonu’s report.

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He stated that all they want is for BPE, which is charged with overall responsibility of implementing Nigerian policy on privatisation and commercialisation to pay everything as listed in the Sumonu’s report without coercion or intimidation.

He said: “Our employment was terminated in 2013 based on some policy, everybody were asked to go, before then, a committee headed by the erstwhile labour leader, Sumonu was set up to plan for our retirements, benefits and severance packages, at the end of the day, part payment of our benefits was paid to us having in mind that they will pay the remaining later.

“We later found out that rather than paying all that supposed to paid to us, they came out with a form last year that they want to pay, but the amount they wanted to pay was very ridiculous, the form indicated that once we signed it, we are saying government didn’t own us anything again aside the stipend they wanted to pay us.

“The form also indicated that signing it mean we agree on resolutions of our union and BPE, so, how can we agree on a resolutions to a meeting we are not party to? we are no longer in service, we don’t need the union.

“The union deducted two percent from the part payment paid to us, the money was above eight billion, it was shared by the union, and they still intend to deduct another two percent again.

“Some have agreed to take the ridiculous money, but those of us who refused to take the money formed a group and called it resolute group.”

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