The Nigerian Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment yesterday disclosed that it was not yet aware of the plans made by a unit of the National Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG).
Mr. Olajide Oshundun who is the spokesperson for the ministry made this known in an interview with reporters in Abuja on Saturday.
Africa Today News, New York reports that the Petroleum Tankers Drivers, a branch of NUPENG, had threatened to embark on strike over harassment by security officials.
The Chairperson of Petrol Tanker Drivers under the National Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers, Lucky Osesua, said the union would stop lifting products at its Port Harcourt zone by Monday, January 9.
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Speaking during a press conference in Abuja, Osesua alleged that men of the Nigerian military burnt down two trucks conveying high pour fuel oil popularly known as black oil while in transit from Imo State to Delta State.
He further warned that the decision to suspend operations would stand until the damage incurred as a result of the high-handedness of the military task force was addressed.
However, reacting to the threat of a strike, the labour ministry’s spokesperson, Oshundun, said, ‘Normally, they are to notify the ministry but I don’t think they have done that. However, they have a national body they report to, so they will take care of the matter. They can’t just decide to go on strike, there is a process to it.’
The current relief being experienced by many Nigerians at petrol retail outlets across the country over availability of the petroleum products may be shortlived the Petroleum Tanker Drivers Branch of National Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers, (PTD-NUPENG) has threatened strike action over what they described as illegal activities and high-handedness of security agents, particularly the Military Task Force operating in the Port Harcourt zone of the Union in Rivers State.
Comrade Lucky Osesua who is the National Chairman of the PTD-NUPENG informed newsmen in Abuja on Wednesday that men of the Military Task Force operating in Port Harcourt burnt two trucks conveying HPFO, otherwise known as Black Oil on Tuesday night, saying the truck drivers were falsely accused of transporting crude oil.
According to the PTD-NUPENG National Chairman, the trucks, which lifted the black oil at a modular refinery, Walter Smith Refinery and Petrochemical Ibigwe in Imo State, on Monday and Tuesday, were intercepted between Ahoada and Elele in Rivers State.