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NUPENG threatens nationwide strike, fuel scarcity looms

Nigeria may experience fuel scarcity in coming days following the threat issued on Monday by

The Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas has given the Federal Government a two-week strike notice, raising the possibility of fuel scarcity across the country in coming weeks.

NUPENG members control the downstream arm of the oil sector, and a strike by the union would put a stop to the supply and distribution of gasoline across the country.

NUPENG said it would launch the scheduled strike at the end of the notice period, citing the necessity to respond to the welfare of oil employees.

NUPENG President Williams Akhoreha and General Secretary Olawale Afolabi issued a joint statement announcing the development.

Last Thursday, a special national delegates conference held by the union made a decision.

It cited a variety of reasons for its decision, including nonpayment of workers’ salaries and title benefits, among others.

The resolution read in part,

We write to convey to the general public and all relevant government agencies the resolution of the special national delegates conference to issue a 14-day notice of a nationwide industrial action if some legitimate welfare and membership related issues that have been variously resolved in our favour even by the Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment are not adequately and conclusively addressed and resolved within the next 14 days. This ultimatum takes effect from Monday, November 15, 2021.”

Read Also: STRIKE: ASUU give Federal government three weeks ultimatum

The main concern, according to the union, is the lingering short payment of terminal benefits to its members who were deemed redundant by Chevron Nigeria Limited management in 2012.

It also accused Chevron’s management of terminating the employment of contract workers who agreed to join the union.

This, it claimed, despite the fact that the workers had worked for between 10 and 20 years and that their jobs had been terminated without payment of termination benefits.

There is also the matter concerning PYRAMIDT workers, who for more than 20 years now are being moved from one labour contractor to another without conditions of service and union representation/recognition,” the union stated.

It went on to say that contract workers in Oil Mining Lease 42 of the Nigeria Petroleum Development Company, a NNPC subsidiary, had been due salary and allowances for up to ten months.

NUPENG claimed that efforts to get the NPDC’s management and contractors to do something about the hapless workers’ condition had received no serious attention or action.

The Nigeria Agip Oil Company and its contractors were also charged with failing to pay contract workers’ salary and allowances for up to ten months.

The reduction in the number of contract workers, particularly at NPDC, was part of the continuing changes outlined in the new Petroleum Industry Act, according to officials from the Federal Ministry of Petroleum Resources and NNPC.

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Written by Babatunde Okerayi

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