MEET FRANK OSHANUGOR
By Frank Oshanugor
Against the backdrop of the ongoing sponsored smear campaign against the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Seplat Energy, Roger Brown; a group known as Seplat Women’s Awesome Network(SWAN) has declared their support for Brown, who has managed Seplat Energy one of the leading players in the country’s oil & gas sector for years.
Only recently, the Chief Executive Officer of the company was accused of discrimination, racism and intimidation by some workers who voluntarily resigned from the employ of the organization and some other people outside the company.
The group which consists of women who work for Seplat described the allegations against Roger Brown as “misleading and distasteful public propaganda.”
In a statement at the weekend, Seplat Awesome Women’s Network described the allegations as misleading blatant falsehood fabricated by disgruntled individuals outside the company.
Part of the statement released by the group said: ” It is therefore concerning that persons outside of our employee population can purport to speak so purposefully and publicly on our welfare. The unfortunate ( but perhaps intended) consequence of these efforts is to disparage the sterling record of our corporate champion and steadfast cheerleader while diverting the much needed time and resources of our Ministry of Interior and courts away from legitimate concerns requiring their attention.”
The group which described itself as a body of women who stand for the utmost truth and equity for all stated that it has resolved to rise in support of Roger Brown against sponsored public attacks on his person and leadership.
“The SWAN proudly stands alongside Roger Brown and joins the Seplat Board of Directors to declare our utmost confidence in him as our CEO and foremost champion for diversity and equality,” the statement said.
The group added that it was under the leadership of Roger Brown that a vision for gender equality crystalized at Seplat and wondered why some misguided people were out to destroy his laudable achievements.
“On this matter, there can be no stronger voice or authority than SWAN because we are a body of Seplat employees comprised only women; the gender globally recognized as victims of workplace discrimination, prejudice and inequality” the group said.
According to SWAN, it was under the leadership of Roger Brown that a Nigerian female staff with longstanding service at Seplat was appointed as the first Managing Director of the oil & gas subsidiary operating the eastern asset of the company.
Other achievements recorded by the CEO is the increase in the paternity and maternity leave periods for Nigerian staff of the company, the launch of the creche facility at the Temple Towers office of the company and funding for all SWAN activities, audit on Seplat facilities at its field locations to ensure equal access and use for women.
The funding of the activities of the group activities enabled collaboration with industry partners and other key stakeholders on high impact and upskilling programmes to break the bias and advance the cause of women at Seplat and at large.
The women’s group further asked,
” How else do you determine the measure of a man and a leader, if not by the conduct that he has consistently shown and the unprecedented decisions that he has made to elevate a minority group that the United Nations itself is calling for global recognition through its Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 5 initiative.”
Describing the ongoing smear campaign against Roger Brown as unacceptable, SWAN stated that it would be a disservice,” if at this critical moment in time, we remain silent and do not collectively rise up to speak for truth and equity; to protect the very man who has been unwavering in his support for all of us; to protect our fellow colleagues who have been unfairly and falsely denigrated in such a public manner”.