By Victor Ahiuma-Young
Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gad Workers, NUPENG, has suspended its planned nationwide strike following intervention by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC.
NUPENG had planned to down tools and begin a nationwide strike to compel Chevron Nigeria Limited, CNL, honour agreement it reached with the union on June 20.
But announcing the suspension of the planned strike in a statement yesterday, President and General Secretary of the union, Prince Williams Akporeha and Afolabi Olawale, respectively, directed members to demobilize and go about their normal duties.
NUPENG assured the public that there would be no disruption of fuel supply, and therefore no need to panic.
The statement reads in part:
“The National leadership of Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) wishes to inform the rank and file members of the Union and the general public that following the intervention of Mallam Mele Kyari, the Group Managing Director and his management team to avert the proposed industrial action of NUPENG over the blatant breach of agreement reached with the Union by Chevron Nigeria and its Contractor and considering the fact that appreciable progress is being made as discussions continue, that the Union hereby suspends with immediate effect the planned industrial action slated for next week.
“It should be put on records that this abrupt suspension became inevitable due largely to the timely intervention of Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) having engaged NUPENG and all concerned stakeholders at two separate meetings on Thursday 1st and Friday 2nd day of August 2019, to correct the anomalies and ensure that the agreement is respected.
“All our members are directed to step down the RED ALERT message, continue rendering their normal and lawful services to the nation while members of the general public are also enjoined to avoid any panic action/measure as we assure all and sundry of normal supply and distribution of petroleum products across the country.
“It should be noted however, that talks are still ongoing between NUPENG and all affected stakeholders to amicably resolve the matter putting into consideration the collateral economic damage the industrial unrest could possibly lead to in the country if not immediately nipped in the bud. It is our firm belief that the ongoing talks will meet the yearnings and aspirations of our demands and that of our overstretched and hardworking members in the interest of industrial peace and harmony.”