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NUPENG suspends planned seven-day industrial action after Chevron recalls 175 sacked workers

THE Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG), says it has suspended the planned nationwide strike expected to commence on August 27, in solidarity with the 175 oil workers who were sacked by Chevron Nigeria Limited and its contractors.

The planned strike action was placed on hold after the Chevron Nigeria Limited, agreed to unconditionally recall and reinstate the 175 workers who were sacked last week through WhatsApp messages sent to their mobile phones.

The oil and gas workers’ union had protested the sack of their members and issued a seven-day strike notice, calling on members to lay down their tools and begin an indefinite nationwide strike.

However, in  a statement signed by Williams Akporeha and Afolabi Olawale, President and General Secretary of NUPENG respectively, the union stated that the suspension of the strike action was due to the reinstatement of the 175 sacked oil workers among other outstanding issues.

“The immediate recall and reinstatement of the sacked workers and the on-going discussions are to quickly resolve other outstanding issues as the oil workers were sacked through WhatsApp and other anti-labour actions and postures,” the statement read.

“The leadership of the Union appreciates all relevant Government Agencies for their quick interventions on the matters in dispute.”

It further stated that the suspension of the strike action was not definite but based on respect for ongoing discussions which depends on the response from Chevron and its contractors.

“However, NUPENG reiterates that the suspension of the strike ultimatum is not a total call off but respect to on-going discussions the Union is having with Chevron and it Contractors over all the issues at stake believing that management will act in good faith and decently in line with principles of social dialogue.”

In August 2019, NUPENG had threatened to embark on a seven-day industrial action after accusing the US oil major, Chevron of sacking hundreds of Nigerian workers and altering their contracts, both of which it said were in violation of an agreement.

However, the planned industrial action was suspended following talks brokered by the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).

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