The National Union of Petroleum and Gas Workers (NUPENG) on Sunday said that the planned strike by its affiliate members, Petroleum Tanker Drivers (PTD), has been suspended.
The strike, which would have kicked off on Monday, was shelved because of the intervention by the federal government through the state-owned firm, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).
The body announced the suspension in a statement jointly signed by Williams Akporeha and Afolabi Olawale, its president and general secretary respectively.
“The leadership of the Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) hereby announced the suspension of the intended withdrawal of the services of Petroleum Tanker Drivers earlier scheduled to commence midnight of Sunday, 10th October, 2021 following the understanding reached with the Union by the management of NNPC at a meeting held in Ibadan, Oyo State, today, 10th October 2021 and the expected outcome of the follow-up meeting that is scheduled to hold on Tuesday, 12, October 2021 in Abuja as contained in the communique issued today,” reads the statement.
“The suspension of our planned action is predicated on our belief that the understanding reached with the government today as well as at the meeting of Tuesday 12th, October 2021 will be fulfilled to the letters.
“We wish to clearly make it known to all well-meaning Nigerians that have variously appealed to us on these issues that our plan was not intended to inflict further pain on Nigerians but to ensure observance of minimum safety on our highways for the good of lives and properties.
“We are well aware of the impacts our actions usually have on the people, businesses and the nation at large but we cannot continue to watch as things continue to degenerate in our industry.
“In the light of the above, the Union will not hesitate to re-commence the action without any notice if the understanding reached in these two meetings are not fully implemented within the timeframe agreed.
“With this, our Petroleum Tanker Drivers are hereby directed to continue providing services for the efficient and effective distribution of Petroleum products to homes and workplaces across the country. Our Solidarity remains constant for the Union makes us strong!” it added.
There won’t be fuel scarcity in December, NNPC assures
Meanwhile, Garba Deen, NNPC Spokesman, has assured in a statement in Abuja that they won’t be fuel scarcity during the festive season.
Mr Deen stated this while appealing to the Tanker Drivers to shelve another of their planned industrial action schedule to begin December 11 over the deplorable state of federal roads across the country.
“While it is not the responsibility of the NNPC to build or rehabilitate roads, the national oil company reckons that any disruption in the distribution of petroleum products to different parts of Nigeria will adversely affect the business of the NNPC.
“It will also endanger energy security, which the country has enjoyed in recent times.
“In recognition of this, the NNPC wishes to assure the petroleum tanker drivers that in addition to the ongoing efforts by other agencies of government, the NNPC has initiated a process that will provide a quick and effective solution to the road network challenges as expressed by the PTD.
“We urge PTD to immediately call off the (planned) strike and give the current efforts by the government and its agencies a chance to solve the challenges in the interest of all.
“We also wish to strongly advise Nigerians not to engage in panic buying of petroleum products as the NNPC has sufficient stock to last through this festive season and beyond,” he said.