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PENGASSAN: Strike Continues As Discussions Continue
The President of the Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria, PENGASSAN, Francis Johnson says the union’s ongoing strike continues until all issues raised before the Ministry of Petroleum Resources and that of Labour are fully addressed.
Johnson said this after a closed-door meeting between leaders of the oil workers’ Unions and federal government representatives at the headquarters of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, in Abuja on Monday.
He insisted that the decision on whether or not to suspend the strike would be made by the national executive council of the union.
The dialogue had in attendance the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Ibe Kachikwu, the Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters, Ita Enang, the Group Managing Director of the NNPC, Maikanti Baru, and leaders of PENGASSAN and NUPENG.
One of the issues discussed at the meeting was the implementation of the 2015 Collective Bargaining Agreement between the federal government and the unions, as well as the implementation of the Petroleum Industry Bill, PIB, and the state under which the oil workers operate, especially with regard to lack of power and bad roads.
Before the meeting went into closed-door, Kachikwu gave the assurance that all the issues would be resolved amicably.
The key issue of redundancy in the sector is expected to be addressed on Tuesday with the Minister of Labour and International Oil Companies, IOCs, but presidents of both PENGASSAN and National Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers, NUPENG, say discussions so far have been satisfactory.
The PENGASSAN had last week declared an industrial action over the dispute, while NUPENG postponed its action pending the outcome of on-gong efforts to resolve the issues.
A visit round major petrol stations in the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, on Tuesday, shows that many of them were either not operating or were offering partial services and the queues were gradually returning.