ITC Ilorin Lead COVID-19 Awareness And Campaign Starting From Factory

ITC Holdings, popularly known as International Tobacco Company based in Ilorin as one of the larger industrials operating in the Middle Belt of Nigeria specializing in food and beverage, has contributed immensely since the inception of the COVID-19 crisis.

The maker of water products, confectionaries and tobacco products first stepped up early in the crisis period in late February by educating its staff, and insisting on best practices in terms of sanitization, hand washing and social distancing. It also ensured every staff was kitted with Personal Protective Equipment including gloves and facemasks, which were made compulsory on the factory floor by March 2020.

As Nigeria entered the throes of the COVID-19 crisis, the company also moved swiftly to assist the state government with donations courtesy of its management and board, and delivered directly to the government house. This donation further spurred the company to do more with respect to its operations and staff welfare, recognizing that given the essential nature of food it couldn’t afford not to continue production for the benefit of the shutdown.

In a first of its kind agreement in Nigeria, it agreed with members of staff to drastically reduce daily roll and headcount, without leading to job losses by up to 50% by instituting an innovative shift work system that rested a significant proportion of staff members weekly on rotational basis. To also ease the concern of contagion and logistics, it secured company shuttle of buses to convey every staff from their home to work and back, daily. This incredible gesture has been applauded by the staff union and is now in full operations. The company also provided financial palliatives for staff members to help them through the period.

ITC Holdings as a responsible corporate citizen also stepped up this weekend to air a public service announcement within its area of operation to support government stay at home order for non-essential workers and citizens. ITC director of public relations, Mr. Sola Amore indicated in a statement that, “ITC is a responsible corporate citizen and has just started and will do more to defeat COVID-19, working with our staff, management, government and all stakeholders. The Kwara state taskforce visited our factory and were surprised by the measure we put in place. It is more than adequate”.

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