A mother of two, Asmau Sulaiman, reportedly fainted twice
on Tuesday after receiving her sack letter from her employer, Kaduna Electric.
Mrs. Suleiman was among 530 workers disengaged by the electricity distribution company.
Some of her colleagues who spoke to our reporter said she slumped immediately she read the content of the sack letter.
“She fainted again as we helped her down from the office on the first floor”, said Rilwan Sani, one of the staff.
Until she was disengaged, Mrs. Suleiman worked for 15 months with the company at its Rigasa Area Office in Kaduna.
When our reporter spoke with her on Thursday, she said she still could not understand the reason why she was affected by the purge.
“I refused to join my husband who is currently working in Saudi Arabia and I just recently relocated and transferred my two children school from Kano to Kaduna because of this Kaduna Electric work. Is this how they will reward our hard work?” she said.
The National Union of Electricity Employees, NUEE, said 530 of its members lost their jobs at the company.
In one of the sack letters signed by the company’s Managing Director, Garba Haruna, and dated January 31, the firm said the disengagement of the workers was the outcome of a `Talent Review’ conducted in 2016.
The company, which distributes electricity to Kaduna, Sokoto, Zamfara and Kebbi states, had recruited about 2,000 workers in August 2015.
The workers’ union said the company confirmed only 20 per cent of the workforce, terminated the appointments of 60 per cent and placed 20 per cent on extended probation for six months.
The union said those whose probationary period was extended had been on the employment of the company for 16 months. It said that the company claimed it had used performance, conduct and competence test as the criteria in the talent review exercise.
But the head, corporate communications, of the company, AbdulAzeez Abdullahi, while addressing journalists on Thursday, said it was a confirmation exercise after a rigorous verification of the credentials of the staff and their levels of competence and commitment.
In a video of the press briefing posted on the company’s Facebook page, Mr. Abdullahi said the appointments of about 90 per cent of the workers were confirmed during the exercise. He said the company had nearly 3000 workers.
Meanwhile, the two in-house unions at the company, NUEE and the Senior Staff Association of Electricity and Allied have given the Board of Directors of the company one week to remove the Managing Director.
They said it was in the interest of the Board, staff and customers for a new head to be appointed for the company in place of Mr. Haruna.
But Mr. Abdullahi waved aside the demand, saying it was not in consonance with labour relations for the staff to ask for the removal of the Managing Director or give ultimatum to the board.