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Ecobank Nigeria dismisses 1,040 workers

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The gale of job losses being witnessed in the country due to the current economic hardship has caught up with Ecobank Nigeria, which has sacked over 1,040 of its employees.

Investigations by our correspondents revealed that the affected staff members of Ecobank included full time and contract workers.

Top officials of the pan-African lender confirmed to our correspondents that the initial list of those to be sacked had over 1,400, workers but was later reduced to “a little above 1,000.”

Ecobank spokespersons declined to comment on the number of workers who were disengaged.

However, the lender said in a statement that it had converted over 200 outsourced personnel to permanent employees as part of its drive to attract and reward talent, while also repositioning for improved efficiency.

In line with the recognition of excellence, the bank also said it had recently implemented a merit-based pay increase for the top performers across all cadres.

The Managing Director, Ecobank, Mr. Charles Kie, was quoted as saying that converting qualified outsourced staff to permanent workers was in line with the bank’s commitment to developing and growing talent by nurturing its people along their career paths and giving them access to higher responsibilities.

He said the bank was resolute that recognising and rewarding excellence would drive its goal of achieving exceptional performance in the industry.

Kie said, “The bank, in its renewed drive for optimal performance, has in addition realigned certain roles bank wide to ensure improved efficiency. This necessitates the exits of some staff who were adequately compensated.

“This is in furtherance of a market repositioning exercise designed to strengthen the bank’s business across all markets where it operates.”

He emphasised that the ETI was on a trajectory to achieve leadership and that the Nigerian subsidiary remained one of Ecobank Transnational Incorporated’s major affiliates as well as one of the country’s systemically important financial institutions.

Kie explained, “Our focus is to improve the quality of service to our customers as well as our operational efficiency.

“We understand that people are our key assets; so, we have emphasised the need to reward our best performers, continue to re-invigorate our people, while also opening up new opportunities for talented and committed people to join us as permanent employees. At the same time, based on our repositioning plan, we had to disengage some staff, while ensuring that, in line with industry standards, they are treated fairly.”

Ecobank Nigeria is a member of the Ecobank Group, which is present in 36 African countries. The Group employs nearly 19,000 people from 40 different countries in over 1,200 branches and offices.

ETI had posted over N40bn decline in its profit for the 2015 financial year owing to high impairment charges.

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Forbes releases list of 20 highest paid rappers in 2019

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US rapper, Kanye West has been named the highest-paid hip-hop act of 2019 in a list compiled by global entrepreneurship magazine, Forbes.

The 42-year-old mogul earned a pre-tax income of $150 million in the year under review, the majority of which comes from his Yeezy empire, a partnership venture with a popular footwear giant.

For the first time, Kanye West out-earned his close ally, Shawn Carter, also known as Jay-Z, who ranks second on this year’s list with $81 million.

Drake, who amassed a fortune with his chart-topping album ‘Scorpion’, rounds out the top three with $75 million, while Diddy takes the number four spot ($70 million), following his deal with Diageo’s Ciroc vodka.

The ladies are also holding it down. Nicki Minaj places number 12 with $29 million, while Cardi B is on her heels at number 13 with $28 million.

The top 20 acts in hip-hop earned a combined $860 million, up 33 per cent from $648 million last year.

Forbes’ Highest-Paid Hip-Hop Acts of 2019

1. Kanye West – $150 million
2. Jay-Z – $81 million
3. Drake – $75 million
4. Diddy – $70 million
5. Travis Scott – $58 million
6. Eminem – $50 million
7. DJ Khaled – $40 million
8. Kendrick Lamar – $38.5 million
9. Migos – $36 million
10. Childish Gambino – $35 million
11. J. Cole – $31 million
12. Nicki Minaj – $29 million
13. Cardi B – $28 million
14. Swizz Beatz – $23 million
15. Meek Mill – $21 million
16. Birdman – $20 million
17. Future – $19.5 million
18. Nas – $19 million
19. Wiz Khalifa – $18.5 million
20. Pitbull – $18 million

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Nigerians To Start Paying For Bank Deposits In 2020

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Starting from September 18, 2019, Nigerians operating bank accounts will begin to pay charges for deposits and withdrawals.

Making the announcement on Tuesday, the Central Bank of Nigeria said that the nationwide implementation of the cashless policy will begin by March 2020.

The apex bank said that implementation of the policy would signal the imposition of charges on deposits in addition to already existing charges on withdrawals.

According to the circular, the charges will attract three per cent processing fees for withdrawals and two per cent processing fees for lodgments of amounts above N500,000 for individual accounts.

For corporate accounts, the apex bank in the circular said that DMBs would charge five per cent processing fee for withdrawals and three per cent for lodgments of amounts above N3m.

The statement, however, disclosed that the charge on deposits would apply in Lagos, Ogun, Kano, Abia, Anambra, and Rivers states as well as the Federal Capital Territory.

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British Airways cancels nearly 100% flights as pilots begin strike over pay

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British Airways (BA) has cancelled nearly 100 percent of flights from UK airports as its pilots embark on first-ever strike over pay.

The airline and its pilots have been locked in a nine-month pay dispute that could disrupt the travel plans of nearly 300,000 people.

Members of the British Airline Pilots Association (BALPA) commenced the strike on Sunday night, leading to the cancellation of hundreds of flights.

In a statement on its website on Monday, BA apologised to its customers for the disruption in their travel plans.

“We understand the frustration and disruption BALPA’s strike action has caused you. After many months of trying to resolve the pay dispute, we are extremely sorry that it has come to this,” the statement read.

“Unfortunately, with no detail from BALPA on which pilots would strike, we had no way of predicting how many would come to work or which aircraft they are qualified to fly, so we had no option but to cancel nearly 100 per cent our flights.”

BA said its team is working on refunding flight fees or re-booking flight schedules for affected customers.

“Our customer teams – supported by additional colleagues – have been working tirelessly to help as many of you as possible and to provide options, including a full refund or re-booking to a different date of travel or alternative airline,” it said.

“We are offering all affected customers full refunds or the option to re-book to another date of travel or alternative airline.”

The pilots said they will continue their strike on Tuesday and are threatening to down tools for one more day on September 27, and possibly at a time closer to the winter should the dispute continue.

In July, BA offered an 11.5 percent pay rise over three years, which it said would take the pay of some captains to more than £200,000 ($246,000 or 220,000 euros) a year. BALPA rejected the pay increase.

The airline said two other unions representing 90 percent of its workers have accepted the 11.5-percent increase.

But BALPA countered, saying that co-pilots’ salaries average around £70,000 , and that of the junior ones drops down to just £26,000.

The association also pointed to a nearly 10-percent jump in pre-tax profits reported by BA’s parent firm, IAG, last year.

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