Due to the unavailability of foreign exchange in the country, the Dangote Group, on Monday, October 24, 2016 laid off 48 members of its workforce.
According to our source who pleaded anonymous, those sacked comprises of 36 expatriate and 12 Nigerian workers from the group’s headquarters and one of the subsidiaries, Dangote Cement Plc.
It was gathered that the sack was as a result of the current high cost of running business in the country, coupled with the scarcity of foreign exchange which has led to the hike in the naira to dollar exchange rate.
It was further gathered that the huge amounts in foreign currencies being paid to the expatriate workers had become a burden due to the steady depreciation in the value of the naira and the difficulties of raising enough dollars.
A letter signed by Aliko Dangote, the president/chief executive officer of Dangote Group, dated Thursday, October 20, 2016 said the firm was constrained to take the “tough” decision as economic factors had affected the cost of production.
The letter, which was titled “Recent Retirement Exercise” appreciated those affected for their contributions to the growth of the group.
It reads “This year has been a very challenging year for us as a business. The unavailability of foreign exchange coupled with an unprecedented hike in the exchange rate has resulted in increased costs across the organisation.
“This called for a proper review and adjustment of our costs across board to ensure efficiency and effectiveness in the deployment of our factors of production in a bid to eliminate redundancies that we know exist, which resulted in some tough decisions, which means losing staff, including some of our colleagues.
“On Friday, October 14, 2016, we began the process of staff cutbacks as it is imperative to review our human capital deployment for the required cutbacks that would ensure efficiency and eliminate redundancies in the allocation of human resources.
“This first phase of this exercise involved the cutback of 36 expatriate staff across the Dangote Cement Plc and Dangote Industries Limited, and 12 local staff members in Dangote Industries Limited.”