By Benjamin Umuteme
The Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN) has said that it would begin a nationwide strike today.
The threat by the body is coming at a time that the country is still battling with scarcity of petroleum products.
PENGASSAN had on Friday last week warned that had no option than to call its members on strike after negotiations with the government over some labour issues stalled.
The umbrella body of senior workers in the oil and gas industry had accused the management of Neconde Energy of wrongful termination of the employment of some of its workers who belong to PENGASSAN
Following the ultimatum, the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Ibe Kachikwu, had offered to broker a truce between the union and Neconde Energy Limited.
In a statement on Friday, spokesperson for the body, Fortune Obi, peace meeting to resolve the crisis ended without any positive resolution.
The statement read in part: “Following the failure of the Minister of Petroleum Resources, Dr Ibe Kachikwu, to settle the rift between this body (PENGASSAN) and Neconde, the management of PENGASSAN has agreed to start the strike on Monday night (December 18th, 2017),”
Mr. Obi said the strike scheduled to commence midnight on Monday would be preceded by an emergency Central Working Committee meeting of PENGASSAN in the morning.
The union said it has already notified its members nationwide to be on standby for the final instructions to shutdown operations if nothing is done by the relevant authorities to avert the planned strike by midnight on Monday.