PENGASSAN pickets Exxonmobil over workers’ sack

The Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN) has picketed head office of Exxonmobil in Nigeria over alleged indiscriminate sacking of workers.

The Exxonmobil branch of PENGASSAN accused the management of the oil giant of anti labour activities.

Speaking with Nigerian Tribune on Thursday, the Exxonmobil branch chairman, Comrade Paul Eboigbe, stated that the management postponed ongoing negotiation and decided to unilaterally sack over 150 workers.

According to him, “Last year, 146 Nigerian workers were sacked in December.  In November this year, they informed us of their intention to sack over 150 Nigerian workers as a measure to reduce cost.

“We didn’t agree at the negotiation table because we asked how many expatriates would also be sacked?”

He said the management postponed the meeting indefinitely because they refused to sack any of the expatriates.

“To our surprise, they started giving sack letters to our members while negotiation was still ongoing. Most of the affected Nigerians are senior management staff with more years ahead of them in service, but they can afford to retain an expatriate whose package can pay 10 Nigerian counterparts of his.

“We have some of these expatriates who have spent over 20 years in service rather than spend four to five years and reach other Nigerians about the knowledge of the job. That’s why we are picketing the company indefinitely,” he said.

When asked if truly the management was reaching out to them on the way forward, he said “they requested that we should suspend the strike and return to negotiating table, but we told them to withdraw the sack letter first and commence negotiation afterwards.

“Until they do that, we won’t suspend the strike action,” he said.

The spokesman of Exxonmobi, Mr. Omo-Ojo, when contacted for reaction said his company would issue an official position soon. The statement was not ready as at time of this report.

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