#Xenophobia: MTN threatens to ground Nigeria operations should it become a victim of reprisal attacks
konknaijaboy | On 23, Apr 2015
VENTURES AFRICA – Africa’s largest telecoms provider, MTN Group, has threatened to shut down its facilities in Nigeria should it become subject to any attacks from locals. The mobile operator fears that it could become a victim of retaliation following xenophobic violence targeting immigrants in South Africa.
However, a complete closure by MTN, which employs more than 6000 Nigerians, could spark chaos within the country’s labour market. MTN has already witnessed series of demonstrations in its Benin and Abuja offices, and a feeling of uneasiness over a possible attack on its facilities is gradually creeping in.
Other non-violent modes of protest, like boycotting companies like MTN and Shoprite, have also been suggested by those aggrieved by the happenings in South Africa. But the telco has insisted that boycotting its services will affect other businesses, as it supports quite a number of these across the length and breadth of Nigeria. “Many of the businesses that are affiliated to South Africa are in the retail space, supporting the growth of Nigeria and employing so many Nigerians.”
The telecommunications company has spent $15 billion on building and expanding its business in Nigeria.
Reaction to MTN’s threat from a group of Nigerian Youths:
MTN Nigeria/MTN Group can send SMS to Nigerian subscribers condemning Xenophobia attack in SA in a bid to save its business as a South African owned organisation just in case of a boycott.
However, the same company had refused since 2009 to own up to have committed one of the greatest crimes against humanity; laying off staff without reasons or notice. Some people may feel otherwise but how do you defend a lay-off of 63 pioneer staff contrary to MTN’s Human Resources Policies, Procedure…………?
MTN also claimed 6000 Nigerians will lose their jobs if the company leaves Nigeria but i believe so many had already lost their jobs unlawfully in the last 10 years. So, its no longer news………
The same company shut down Jos Call centre without reason rendering over 2500 Nigerian youths jobless just because these committed and passionate youths demanded for improved welfare despite all efforts by the Nigeria Labour Congress to make sure all parties settle amicably. MTN Nigeria went ahead to send these youths (over 2500 into the labour market without notice or settlement. Many of these youths got stranded in Jos with no money, some even died due to road accidents going back to their bases while some had been absorbed by rival Telecoms companies like Etisalat, Airtel or Globacom.
* Xenophobia; people killed (lives taken without purpose or notice)
* MTN Shut down of Jos Call centre; Youths sent into the street without notice.
* MTN Nigeria’s November 2009 unlawful lay-off (livelihood taken without purpose or notice – so many dependants)
The Senate Committee on Public Petition condemned the lay off Jan 2012 yet MTN never acted as advised.
The National Industrial Court was next yet MTN Nigeria plays hide and seek till date while they cause:
- Psychological trauma
- Emotional imbalance
- Career distress
- Broken Homes
- Deaths and more
The National Industrial Court dismisses MTN Nigeria’s Preliminary Objection in an Unlawful lay-off suit (Suit No: NICN/LA/596/2013)
MTN Nigeria a leading telecommunication service provider with HQ in South Africa is currently battling its Nov 2009 Unlawful/Unfair lay-off of 63 Customer Relations Staff which was carried out without notice, reason and contrary to the organisation’s HR Policies, Processes & Procedures.
The National Industrial Court on June 2, 2014 dismissed the preliminary objection filed by MTN Nigeria challenging the 63 Customer Relations staff unlawfully laid off in 2009 to file the suit in a representative capacity.
The court ruling was made June 2, 2014 by the President of the National Industrial Court; Justice Adejumo (OFR)
The judge “threw away” MTN’s Preliminary Objection and ruled that the case has been “admitted for trial”. Accordingly, the Judge fixed 2nd and 3rd of July 2014 for the “Trial” despite MTN’s objections.
On July 2, 2014 after a brief court argument MTN’s lawyers opted for negotiation. Case was adjourned to give room for negotiation while…..the case came up again on 2nd October, 2014 for…..report of settlement/hearing and had been at that stage till date with MTN Nigeria not making necessary effort but rather sit on the fence.
The case had since been adjourned till April 28, 2015 after a long Easter Break at the NIC without sitting on March 25, 2015.
Venue: The National Industrial Court
31, Lugard Avenue, Ikoyi, Lagos.
Date: 28th day of April, 2015
MTN’s Lawyer: Aluko & Oyebode
Ex-Staff Lawyer: AAA Chambers
MTN sending text messages condemning Xenophobia??? When they render people homeless and without hope. People who served diligently for over 8yrs laid off just like that without pay or dignity????? They were thrown out of the premises under heavy security like they were criminals.
Is MTN different from those killing foreigners in SA? Well, justice we await!!!!!!!