In response to a 14-Day Ultimatum letter by the National Union of Electricity Employees, the Federal Ministry of Labour and Productivity convened a meeting of the the National Union of Electricity Employees and Senior Staff Association of Electricity and Allied Companies and the Bureau for Public Enterprises.
In attendance at the meeting were the Minister of Labour and Productivity, Chief Emeka Wogu, Prof. Chinedu Nebo, Minister of Power, Permanent Secretaries, Amb. Dr. G. Igali OON (Power), Dr. O. C. Illoh, (L&P), Accountant General of the Federation, Mr. J. N. Otunla, Dr. Timiebi Agary, representative of Pension Management Commission (PENCOM), amongst others.
Background information as provided by Government:
(a) Total No of staff paid severance benefits 43,375;
(b) Total No of staff paid RSA benefits 40,215;
(c) Bonafide staff of PHCN yet to be paid 2023
(d) Uncleared casuals 2156.
At the end of exhaustive deliberations, it was agreed as follows:
(i) Bonafide staff to be paid their severance benefits on or before the end of January, 2014;
(ii) Admitted casuals to be paid on/before end of March, 2014; progressive payments to be tracked;
(iii) All Pensions should be processed and payments should be effected accordingly;
(iv) Furthermore, the 7.5% employer pension contribution of July, 2012 to 31st October, 2013 will be paid by the Federal Government (Market Operator);
(v) Payment of pension deductions from 1st November, 2013 to date will be paid by the New Operators into workers RSA Accounts;
(vi) BPE & FMP to fast track approval and payment of death benefits to beneficiaries within one month;
(vii) The complain of victimization of labour leaders to be handled by the Federal Ministry of Power and BPE in accordance with extant regulations within January, 2014;
(viii) Workers who are being owed salary arrears and have not been severed will be paid by the Federal Government and should stay in position until they are paid.
(ix) The Ministry of Power and BPE would fund a workshop to be organized by Federal Ministry of Labour and Productivity in 1st week of February, 2014, for the new investors, unions and other stake holders in the industry;
(x) The allegation of nonpayment of entitlement to staff covering July, 2012 should be referred back to the implementation committee for conclusion within January 2014.
(xi) On the staff re-engagement letters reported to be withheld by some new investors it was agreed that the BPE should submit comprehensive list of re-engaged staff to the Technical Sub-committee for confirmation;
(xii) The implementation committee should set up a verification subcommittee to establish payment of certain entitlements listed in agreement of October, 2013 and identify those stations that have paid and those that have not paid;
(xiii) BPE should submit the list of the 483 uncleared RSA holders to the Technical subcommittee for rectification.
(xiv) On Equity share holding, Federal Government will make 10% offer of first refusal to the work force in the Power Sector in line with extant agreement, policies and market regulations.
(xv) Any reduction in/stoppage of salaries and wages of staff by the new investors is a violation of section 21 of the Electric Power Sector Reform Act, 2005 and should be reversed by defaulting operators, where it occurs
3. The above resolutions were reached in good faith with a strong commitment to maintaining and promoting industrial harmony in the industry.
4. In line with the above resolutions, the 14-Day ultimatum issued by the Union was suspended for two weeks.
Federal Ministry of Information (FMI) Press Release