400 former Crane Bank staff demand 48billion shilling payoff - Business | NTV

400 former Crane Bank staff demand Shs48Bn from BOU and DFCU

Thursday October 25, 2018

Kampala. More than 400 former employees of Crane Bank have written to the Bank of Uganda and dfcu Bank, demanding Shs48 billion in terminal benefits.
Before the takeover, the central bank had assured the 700 employees of Crane Bank that they would not lose their jobs.

However, after dfcu took over the bank in January 2017, they sacked some of the employees in a disputed restructuring exercise and closed some of the branches.
The former employees say their sacking contravened the Employment Act 2006 and they are now seeking compensation from the bank.
The workers, through their lawyer, Mr Isaac Ssemakadde, told journalists in Kampala yesterday that dfcu Bank and the central bank did not follow the formal and legal procedures of laying them off during the transition period.
The former workers accused dfcu Bank of breaching the constitutional, statutory and common law duties it owed to them as the transferee of their respective employment contracts, thereby causing them loss and injury.

Mr Ssemakadde explained that dfcu was supposed to collapse all the systems and subject all workers to interviews to compete for the available new jobs through a fair and rational criteria. This, according to Mr Ssemakadde, was not done, and instead dfcu managers sacked former Crane Bank workers.
“The employees contend that the collective termination of their respective employment contracts was unjustified, unfair, discriminative, demeaning and breach of the law,” Mr Semakadde said.
He said they wrote to dfcu Bank to compensate the laid off Crane Bank employees but bank officials directed them to involve BoU.
The employee are demanding Shs48 billion, valued at about Shs120 million each).

“The employees have suffered distress and financial loss as a result of the high-handed and unlawful acts of BoU and dfcu Bank and this is deemed to be their respective terminal benefits in accordance with the law, together with a basic sum of not less than Shs120 million to each member of the represented class for the loss so far occasioned to them, “ the lawyer said.
He said if BoU does not invite the affected employees to discuss the resettlement plan and clear the money in question before December, they will petition court.
Mr Ssemakadde said they will base their evidence on the recent Auditor General’s report, which highlighted irregularities in the deal between dfcu Bank and BoU, including the disputed closure and controversial sale of at least seven banks, Crane Bank inclusive.
Ms Slyvia Juuko, the BoU head media relations, said she was out of office for official matters and directed us to speak to Ms Ishta Atukunda. Ms Atukunda, who admitted receipt of our email requesting for a comment, and promised to respond but had not done so by press time.