By Victor Ahiuma-Young
ABUJAâ€”The Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria, PENGASSAN,Â has called on the Acting President, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, to address persisting issues such as contract staffing and other unfair labour practices among multinational and local companies in the sector.
President of PENGASSAN, Comrade Babatunde Ogun, who spoke when he led other national leaders of PENGASSAN on a visit to the new Minister of Labour and Productivity, Chief Emeka Wogu in Abuja, however assured of industrial peace in the sector provided government guarantees a conducive environment.
According to him, â€œ we are readyÂ to give the Federal Government our full support provided government provide the enabling environment.
Among such conducive environment that the administration to address is the persisting issues such as contract staffing and other unfair labour practices among multinational and local companies in the sector.â€
Welcoming the support of the Association, the Minister said the Ministry had in its determination to realise the maximum welfare of all workers constituted a committee to look into issues such as contract staffing, casualisation and unionization presently agitating the sector.
The Minister assured of governmentâ€™s determination to confront present issues facing the sector including casualisation, contract staffing and the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB).
â€œWe have set up a committee to look into issues concerning contract staffing/casualisation and unionization so that we can come up with a blueprint to tackle the monster.
â€Our Constitution ensures that there is freedom of association and I think that whatever we are going to do has to be done within the ambits of the law.
We are going to give you maximum support and cooperation in ensuring that issues of industrial relations in the oil and gas sector are treated with maximum dispatch and in record time and we will work with you to a logical conclusion to add value to the oil and gas industry because it is the mainstay of the economy.â€
Among those present with Comrade Ogun were Comrade Wali Mustapha, deputy national president, Comrade Bayo Olowoshile, General Secretary; Comrade Mohammed Saidu, Kaduna zonal chairman and Comrade Folorunso Oginni, Lagos zonal chairman.