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NUPENG Issues Another Strike Notice!

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The Nigerian Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) has threatened to embark on strike if the ongoing divestment in the oil sector by some multinationals was not halted.
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Mr Igwe Atuche, the President of NUPENG, said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Friday.
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Atuche deplored the ongoing divestment, saying it was intended to sabotage the Federal Government’s efforts to reposition the petroleum sector.
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He said that the situation had raised concerns about the sincerity of government to refocus the sector.
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Atuche urged the government to demonstrate its resolve on the issue by checking the divestment trend.
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He also said that one of the drawbacks of withdrawal of interests in the sector would be loss of jobs by Nigerians.
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Atuche therefore called on the government to constitute a team to look into the issue, warning that unless this was done, the union would call out its members on strike.
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“We are actually planning a strike, going by the recent development in the oil sector.
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“We are concerned about activities of the multinational organisations, including Shell, Chevron, Mobil and others, where we believe the government has 60 per cent investments, yet today, a lot of divestment is going on in the sector.
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“In the last World Economic Summit, Shell said it was going to divest about one billion-dollar equity in Nigeria.
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“Our question is who gave the approval to divest. As I speak to you, there is serious divestment going on in Shell, Chevron, Mobil, Total and Agip,” he said.
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The union president said that if the union was pushed to embark on strike, it might be worse than the recent one by the Academic Staff Union of Universities.
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He said that the union would continue to fight until the right of workers in the sector were respected.
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Atuche accused the multinationals of unfair labour practices, saying that some Nigerians in the companies had remained as casual or contracts workers for many years.
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He also called on the government to do all it could to ensure that refineries in the country worked optimally.
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Atuche said that the position of the union on the issues, especially the divestment of equity, had been communicated to the Federal Government.