New owners will not take over power utilities until labour is settled, says Nebo.

MINISTER of Power, Professor Chinedu Nebo has assured electricity workers that the successor companies of Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) will not be handed over to the new owners until all labour related issues are resolved.
Nebo, spoke in response to the agitations by labour that the new owners would not be allowed to take possession until government settles their putts ding entitlements. The Minister’s clarification came against the widespread misconceptions of the Monday ceremony performed by President Goodluck Jonathan.
The Minister said that government would stick to its own part of the agreements reached with labour and that there was no cause for alarm. He also clarified that what government did on Monday was to transfer its shares in the firms and issue operating licenses to private owners. The physical handover , he said, would be done much later ( sometime in November) when labour issues would have been resolved.
His words: “We are not going to physically handover until everyone jis fully taken care of. Most of them have now received their severance package but we also need to pay pension package. So severance package will be given to everyone of them and their pension benefits will be credited into their PFA accounts.
” Once that is done we know that the severance is complete and then we can physically handover to all these private companies.
I can say that the physical handover has not been made because we need to complete that first.”
President Goodluck Jonathan, had on Monday called on the electricity workers the workers to be disengaged not to nurse a feeling of displacement, but dwell on what he described as “tremendous possibilities that the privatization of the sector holds for them and the future.”
Speaking at the handover of shares certificates and licenses to the new owners on Monday, Nebo had stressed that the reforms had the labour union uppermost on its agenda.
He said of labour: “The entire reform has been carried out ensuring that the welfare of the PHCN workers was fully taken into consideration. It is in this respect and after months of negotiations that we reached agreements with the labor unions on all pertinent issues. Accordingly, out of 47, 614 PHCN workers who were identified, we have completed the biometrics capture and related validation of 45,156 workers.