NUPENG 2019 MAY DAY MESSAGEemmanuel ajibule
The National Leadership of Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG), today May 1, 2019, otherwise known as Workers’ Day heartily rejoice with Nigeria’s oil and gas workers and other critical stakeholders in the industry as well as workers in general on this felicitous day that is globally and traditionally set aside to celebrate workers and their uniqueness.
It is a day not just for parades, speech-making, rallies, merriment, but a time to reflect and ponder on where we are coming from and how far we have gone.
May Day is therefore a period for sober reflection and review of our past activities with a view to fashioning a new path to progress and putting the struggle for the emancipation of Nigerian workers in the front burner.
As you all know, these are trying times for the workers of this great country, especially in the oil and gas industry.
The oil and gas sector has been bedeviled with numerous challenges ranging from redundancy, casualisation, outsourcing, hostile employers, to non-implementation of Collective Bargaining Agreements (CBA) to non-recognition of Unions in the workplace.
In the midst of these challenges in the oil and gas industry, we shall remained resolute and undaunted, we will never give up, as the Union will continue the struggles and resist anti-labour practices with all the resources at our disposal. Our mandate is to defend. Promote and protect the rights of our members and this we promise to do with all our might.
Be that as it may, the leadership of the Union enjoins all our members to use the auspicious occasion to be more united and avoid divisive tendencies, because unity is our strength.
The Union leadership also found it appropriate to commend President Muhammadu Buhari and the National Assembly for the passage and signing into Law, the new National Minimum Wage, giving workers in both the private and public sectors an opportunity to earn N30,000 as minimum pay. The expected impact of this intervention is far reaching both in terms of scope of coverage of the nation’s workforce and the financial implications.
It is our prayer that the government would not be distracted by some State Governors who may want to serve as impediments to the wheel of progress in this regard. We know there is no state in Nigeria that does not have the capacity to conveniently implement this modest benchmark for workers in their respective states.
Similarly, it is the desire of NUPENG to witness Presidential assent to the Petroleum Industry Bill. This legislation would not only help to create more jobs for Nigerians but will also foster conducive business environment for petroleum operations when signed into law.
NUPENG is further using this auspicious day to make passionate appeal to Federal Government to strengthen and activate all relevant employment laws of Nigeria to fight and win the battle against precarious and indecent work conditions of oil and gas workers, casualization, right to freedom of association (right to be unionized) and entrenchment of fair labour practices and policies.
Fellow Comrades, we will continue to count on your support and unalloyed loyalty in the numerous programmes already put in place to move the Union to greater heights.
The leadership of the Union will not rest on its oars to defend the rights and privileges of oil and gas workers in Nigeria.
NUPENG as trustee of posterity will continue to serve as a pillar of strength as we brave the challenges and storms, working together to build a dynamic, strong, united and prosperous nation.
Happy May Day to Nigeria oil and gas workers and the entire industrial community!
Our solidarity remains constant for the Union makes us strong!
COMRADE (PRINCE) WILLIAMS AKPOREHA
NUPENG NATIONAL PRESIDENT
COMRADE AFOLABI OLAWALE
GENERAL SECRETARY OF NUPENG