By Ononye VC
The Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) has threatened a nationwide strike over the faceoff between the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and the Kaduna State government.
Labour had declared a five-day warning strike over some policies of Governor Nasir El-Rufai, especially the sacking of 4,000 workers.
On Tuesday, the Kaduna government declared Comrade Ayuba Wabba, NLC president, and some labour leaders wanted over the effect of the strike on the economy.
El-Rufai equated the protesters in his state to bandits and swore that their action would not compel his government rescind its decision.
Some protesters were also attacked by hired thugs of the government
In a statement, the National President of the NUPENG, Williams Akporeha, said the union which is one of the 46 bodies affiliated with the NLC, is observing the Kaduna situation closely.
He said if the attacks on protesters continue, NUPENG would withdraw its services nationwide.
“The Leadership of the Union is therefore calling on the Federal Government to immediately call on Kaduna State Governor Mallam Nasir El-Rufai to order before his arrogance and power drunk ego further push the situation into horrendous calamity as he has been doing in all issues relating to human lives and wellbeing.
“Consequently, the Union reiterates that no Labour Leaders or workers as the case may be, be harmed, harassed, maimed, humiliated or victimized during this 5-day peaceful protests in the State.
“Our Union is raising this alarm following the very reliable report of the clandestine move of Governor Nasir El-RUfai to hurt and put the lives of NLC President, Comrade Ayuba Wabba and other Labour Leaders to danger in his usual blind egotistical style of running government in the State
“NUPENG therefore warns that if any harm is inflicted on any of the members of organized Labour, the Leadership of the Union will not hesitate to call on all our members throughout the nation for a total shut down of all our services in the upstream, mid-stream and downstream sectors of the oil and gas industry.
“In the light of the above, we are therefore putting all NUPENG members nationwide on red alert and may at very short notice of five hours call for a nationwide industrial action if situation arises.
“Our solidarity remains constant for the Union makes us strong,” the statement read
By Ononye VC