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How Nigerian Women Are Fighting Back Against Toxic Workplace Environments

Agreed, many things that never happened before now appear to be the norm in the Millennial and Gen Z society. This dynamic and ever-adapting generation has been at the forefront of mental health issues more than ever before. This creates a chasm for the elder generations to bridge, and when they don't, a power struggle ensues. The boss-employee conundrum exemplifies this.

It all started with a TechCabal story on Bento and its 'Marlo Stanfield' CEO, Ebun Okubanjo. A post on Nigerian news portal, TechCabal, in March highlighted charges of workplace harassment at Bento, blaming the poisonous culture of the Lagos-based payroll management firm on CEO Ebun Okubanjo. The story of excessive work hours, harsh criticism, and abrupt firings struck such a chord that a Twitter Space on the subject lasted nearly eight hours, extending over into the following morning, with over 91,000 listeners joining and many claiming workplace mistreatment.

More people took to Twitter to share their traumatic experiences with Okubanjo, as well as managers at other organisations ranging from unknown startups to major corporations. Aside from workplace abuse, there have been reports of employment offers being revoked without cause, including one example when a prospective worker was supposedly asked to leave from their previous position. The outrage reveals that there is a significant gap in Nigeria's response to labour issues, and that the startup ecosystem is failing to alter the established quo. In the midst of it all, Nigerian women are the easiest prey for these predatory practices.