The national leaderships of both the Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers and the Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria have cautioned companies in the oil and gas industry against sacking workers.
The unions said they had received series of reports from their members of attempts by some multinational and indigenous oil and gas companies to exploit the current COVID-19 situation to sack workers.
In a joint statement issued on Tuesday, the leadership of the unions stated that they sympathize with the employers over the negative impacts COVID-19 is having on the industry and business operations, but the moves if not properly checked, will further complicate the already impoverished state of Nigerian Oil and Gas Workers.
“The leadership of NUPENGASSAN condemn these moves and vow to resist them with all our might, as the moves are seen as unfair to the selfless and patriotic services of the Nigerian Oil and Gas workers to these Companies and the Nation over these past highly productive years and even when these workers are still fully participating in the frontline of the struggle against the pandemic rendering essential services.
These moves if not properly checked and managed by relevant authorities whose guidelines are being continually disobeyed by these Organizations will further complicate the already impoverished state of Nigerian Oil and Gas Workers, their immediate family and others depending on the workers’ incomes, for a living.”
The unions also called on the Federal Government to “urgently nip these ugly trends in the bud to avoid many untoward and damaging consequences of the actions and reactions.
The statement added that the unions will be forced to carry out an action that will affect the entire industry if the trend is not halted.
“The Federal Government and all its relevant Agencies are further put on notice that NUPENGASSAN might be forced to precipitate an action that will affect drastically the entire industry if this ugly trend is not halted and erring Organizations called to order.
“We earnestly implore these Companies that in the same manner and spirit they are making donations for the fight against COVID-19, they should also spare some kind thoughts for their Workers and strive to keep them alive and on the job so as not to create social upheavals that would be more devastating than the COVID19 pandemic.”