THE Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN) has insisted that the strike action it called commenced on Thursday with the gradual withdrawal of members on the offshore, loading bays and flow stations.
Reacting to a media report that the strike has been called off, the Association’s Public Relations Officer, Comrade Emmanuel Ojugbana, said that the strike has really commenced despite the Eid el Filtri public holiday declared by the Federal Government.
According to a statement by the PENGASSAN National Public Relations Officer, Comrade Ojugbana, “there is no iota of truth in the report that the strike has been called off or suspended.
“As we speak now, some of our members that are in the offshore have been withdrawn, while others who are on critical equipment have commenced gradual shutting down of such equipment before their final disengagement.
“Our members, especially those in offices and downstream sector will join tomorrow (Friday) as they resume from the Eid el Fitri holiday.”
Comrade Ojugbana has restated that the strike was to press home PENGASSAN demands for government’s attention to some critical challenges impacting the survival of the nation’s oil and gas industry.
The Senior Staff Trade Union listed some of the challenges to include lingering irregular Joint Venture funding and Cash Call payment arrears, lack of a clear cut direction on the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB), forceful co-option of government agencies in the industry into the Integrated Personnel Payroll Information System (IPPIS), and spate of redundancy and retrenchment in the Oil and Gas industry.