Senator Iroegbu in Abuja
The National Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) has suspended its three-day warning strike that commenced yesterday, after a deal was reached with the government, international oil companies (IOCs), and other stakeholders in the industry over the issues.
Speaking with iournalists at the end of the meeting that lasted over five hours in Abuja, NUPENG President, Igwe Achese, said having been satisfied with the commitment shown by the Ministry of Petroleum over the issues, the union would suspend the strike.
NUPENG had embarked on a three-day warning strike over casualisation, job security issue, non implementation of collectives agreement in the oil and gas sector in the country, and the bakarnisation of the ongoing divestment system that is currently taken place in the idustry.
Meanwhile, the commitment by the IOCs was that all the oil companies should go and address the grey areas concerning welfare issues of their workers and report back their respective ministries within two weeks.
In the same vein, the Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr. Chris Ngige, who presided over the meeting, said it would enforce compliance of the oil companies with agreement reached with the unions in the oil and gas industry.
Also, Ngige directed the oil companies that did not show up for the meeting to appear before it on or before January 24, 2017, failing which the ministry would enforce relevance laws to compel them to appear.
The minister further explained that meeting was to provide lasting solution to the lingering industrial crisis in the oil and gas sector.
He said: “A lot of agreement have been reached but not complied with by the IOCs and the LOCs as petition by the unions. is even more painful and regretful that NNPC has also not live up to their agreements.
“So, the essence of the meeting is for us as re-conciliators to arrest pending strike by NUPENG and PENGASSAN. And for the companies involved whether government or IOCs or LOCs to sit down with us and agree on timelines for the effective implementation of the agreement reached.”