First Bank pensioners picket Ibadan branch


First Bank pensioners picket Ibadan branch
By; Bayo Akamo, Ibadan.
Members of the National Union of Pensioners (NUP), First Bank Plc, Ibadan branch, embarked on a warning picketing of the Dugbe branch of the bank for over 160 minutes.
It was learnt that the First bank pensioners stormed the bank by 6.45am, preventing staff and customers access into the premises of the bank.
On arrival, the pensioners were armed with placards having varied inscriptions such as “Save Our Souls message to First Bank Management”- “We are suffering in the midst of abundance” while a female pensioner sat in front of the gate leading to the bank drinking garri pitifully to show their plight while they barricaded the gate.
The pensioners were also busy distributing pamphlets as well as displaying placards having inscriptions like  “No entry please, First Bank pensioners are in action”, “We pensioners deserve to be treated well and not like dead woods”, “What can we do with N15,000 pension per month in Nigeria of today”, “as at year 2004/2005, our pension stood at over N200billion, according to the then Managing Director, our directors should explain to the whole world what has happened to the fund”.
Speaking with journalists during the warning picketing, the immediate past National President, National Union of Pensioners (NUP) First Bank branch, Prince Debo Olaoya said the pensioners have been having problem with their monthly pension and medical allowance for over two years and that the matter was in a court of law but that their former employer  failed to obey the judgment of the court.
“We’ve been having problem with the First Bank of Nigeria Plc management for many years now on various issues, with particular emphasis on monthly pension allowance and annual medical allowance. Several meetings were held with the representatives of First Bank management over this issue without any resolution,” he said.
Prince Olaoya while stressing that the pensioners have “followed grievances procedure culminating into a 21 days ultimatum given to the management” said, “this ultimatum however expired without solution on January 31, 2016”.
“Before then, the management of FBN solicited the intervention of the Federal Ministry of Labour. A tripartite meeting which was held between the NUP/FBN, Ministry of Labour and the management of First Bank Nigeria, was deadlocked.  Accordingly, the NUP directed that we should embark on a warning picketing exercise of some branches of FBN and that is what is taking place today simultaneously in Ibadan, Kaduna, Abuja, Kano, Onitsha, Enugu among others.”
During the warning picketing, some senior managers of the bank were sighted running around pleading with the pensioners to allow the staff to enter the bank with the pensioners turning deaf ears to their pleading.
Also, the Divisional Police Officer (DPO) Iyaganku, Emmanuel Ojopagogo later joined in pleading with the pensioners while at about 8.40am, the pensioners allowed the workers in with a warning that  they “would come back for a mother of picketing which could mean shutting the bank down for a whole day or even more than that.”


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