I started my legal practice with a firm that paid me nothing for about one year. It was not deliberate and I would never hold it against my principal then. Abeg, the man too dey struggle. We moved pass that because I had a fantastic senior who had mastered the art of holding his own. All the stipends I got then were from him! When I eventually got another place and decided to tell Principal that I am going to look for where they will pay me, the man began sermon? On top say you no sabi the English word “Salary” you still had the mind to ask me to wait till I help you conclude matter wey I start?. Well, it happened that I did not agree to that and he was not happy with me for a long while. I don’t think he is even happy still. Whats my own?
Second place, he was an Ancestor. Fantastic human being. He knows the law and had so much to impact. But, pay no dey and these bills? They only hear money! Nothing else. Brethren, the salary was ridiculously small. So, I spent approximately two years there and after so much misery and sufferness (na English be that?), I decided it was time to take a walk. By then, I was already the carry-on bag for Ancestor, so, I knew it was going to be difficult disengaging. But I needed to attend to bills! So I consulted and issued the notice. In fairness I had a proper employment letter with terms and conditions. Although they were deducting tax, their eyes were blinded to benefits such as pension and HMO and when you suggest it, it’s all yada yada! So, After I issued the notice, I was told to hand over and take a walk immediately. You know like, come and be going. The notice period plus your salary carry they go. No return the next day. Haa, as if they even knew that I needed the rest before taking up another job. I thanked them in my mind well well. Carried myself home and pampered it for two weeks before going to my second place of work. So, up till now, I don’t know whether they sacked me or I sacked myself. But hey, I left with my head high.
As days turned into years, I began to hear other horrible stories of what transpires between principals and juniors when they decide to aspire higher. All the ones above were still playing in my head when I heard the one that made me decide to rant o!
A friend working with a popular ancestor. If I mention the name of this Ancestor now eh, I will be derobbed! So, my friend was employed on a 50k per month salary. Three years after, there was an increase; it became 70k and then two more years attracted another 10k all together 80k for five years. When bills began to pile up, my good friend carried his two left legs after some resetting abuse from wify to tell Ancestor and that he is not doing again effective from one month.
Instead of Ancestor to negotiate with him, hear JAMB question. “How do you expect me to function without you? I have gotten so used to you. You cannot just leave like that. You need to give me few months’ notice and train a replacement for yourself. You owe me that!” My friend waited for the one month notice he gave to elapse and bolted. What, with no employment letter, you be wizard? Na so Ancestor write letter and threatened to report him to LPDC. We are still waiting for him.
So I ask, what is with all these “you must remain with me to eat crumps forever?” what is the nightmare about? How do we interpret the very basic law of employer/employee relationship? If you have not given me an employment term, should I owe you a duty that never existed? And if you did give me and I comply with such terms must you bear grudges and report me to elders for daring to move on?
Worst of it all, you no fit pay me, you no go bless me make I dey go? They send me come meet you for this world? Abi na you pay my school fees? Now even if you are paying me so well and I decide it was time to do other things, its my life, my decision! The heck!
Shout out to all the law firms where send forth parties are organized for colleagues who move on! God go bless una well well. Na higher higher una firm go dey go! You will not see clients that will report you to LPDC! You will not see clients wey no dey gry pay money wey go make you issue Bill of charges o! Oya everybody say Amen to this prayer!
For the other Principals, hmmmm, I pray for you! May the next junior to leave your law firm be given a send forth party at a 5 star hotel!
Can I hear you say Amen Principal?
My grouse: venting my Frustrations