In what appears to be a swift reaction to the recent sack of over 500 Nigerian employees, the National Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas, NUPENG and Petroelum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria, PENGASSAN have ordered their members in Chevron Nigeria Limited to shut down operations.
This swift decision was contained in a joint statement on Sunday by NUPENG President, Williams Akporeha, and PENGASSAN President, Festus Osifo.
The unions also cited Chevron’s alleged anti-labour practices.
They said: “We have directed our members in Chevron to withdraw their services. We call on the Federal Government to call Chevron to order; we can no longer guarantee industrial peace in the oil and gas sector.
“Here is our fatherland and we have a labour law that regulates the activities of organisations in Nigeria; this law cannot be breached; We must follow the process.”
Labour alleged that Chevron management, on Independence Day, notified about 2,000 employees that their services were no longer required.
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The leaders further alleged that Chevron asked employees still interested in working with them to apply afresh.
NUPENG and PENGASSAN declared that the development runs contrary to Nigerian laws and does not protect national interest.
“This is an imperialist agenda that must not be allowed to stay; most especially as we have just finished celebrating our 60th independence as a sovereign country,” they said.
Chevron General Manager Policy, Government and Public Affairs, Esimaje Brikinn, explained that the welfare and safety of its workforce was one of its highest priorities.
He noted that the changes made were not easy decisions, but aimed at improving the company’s ability to remain competitive in Nigeria.
“Reducing the cost and improving the efficiency of our operations are critical to generating more revenues for the Federal Government of Nigeria,” Brikinn said.