THE Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) has given 21 days ultimatum to National Association of Road Transport Owners (NARTO) and other industry players for a positive resolution and implementation of collective bargaining agreement for tanker drivers and other anti-labour issues in the Nigeria Oil and Gas Industry.
The President, NUPENG, Comrade Prince Williams Akporeha said, the union has been given names and needlessly accused of having penchants for calling for industrial actions yet the flagrant refusal by various employers in the Nigeria Oil and Gas sector and successive governments to attend to working conditions and welfare issues involving members continued unabated.
The Union President lamented on ill-treatment of workers ranging from indecent and precarious working conditions, refusal to allow unionization and allow collective bargaining negotiation, non-payment of end of contract benefits and other anti-labour practices by indigenous and other multinational oil and gas companies in the country, which utterly alien to industrial rules.
He decried employers of Petroleum Tankers Drivers (NARTO) for their refusal to implement the collective bargaining agreement reached in 2016, and added that ” it is just few months to the expiration of the said agreement, yet most NARTO members have wickedly and callously refused and failed to honour their words or follow the path of integrity by executing what the association accented to”
He stressed that the Petroleum Tankers Drivers have shown considerable endurance, patience and tolerance in the face of blatant deprivation and denial of their legitimate rights, while toiling days and nights under excruciating working conditions, putting their lives on the line to move the economy forward, especially in the downstream value chain.
Akporeha reiterated that the Union condemn in strongest terms how oil and gas workers in the industry are being treated by multinational companies who use them as slaves in their motherland, stressing that, portfolio investors cannot continue to make billions in the country whilst their employees suffer gross impoverishment and other precarious conditions.
The union expressed displeasure about the activities of some contractors that are engaged by some oil and gas multinationals who have willfully refused to pay workers their end of contract benefits having been relieved from active service.
The Union President said, this not only criminal but a slap on the government, as it is also the responsibility of these oil companies whose contractors are culpable of this reprehensible and despicable act to prevail on them in order to revert to honour and decency.
“If these companies have little or no respect for our institutions and extant labour laws, the Union is set to expose them at the global stage, where more decisive actions would be taken.
“We will take the battle to their respective global boardroom and expose their nefarious activities to their global clients” he fumed.
The Union President urge all stakeholders concerned particularly, the Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment, Nigeria Contents Development and Monitoring Board, Oil and Gas Trade Sector, NARTO, NNPC, Shell Petroleum Development Company, Chevron Nigeria Limited, Mobil Oil Producing and the Akwa Ibom government to urgently apprehend the looming industrial relation crisis by complying with their demands for the sake of industrial peace and harmony.
“The Union have unanimously resolved to issue 21days ultimatum for positive resolution of the demands of NUPENG to the the leadership of NARTO, IOCs and other key players, failure upon which, we shall not hesitate to pursue further legitimate steps to seek redress within shortest possible time in the interest of our members, if these ugly trends are not reversed” he said.
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