Oil, Gas Sector: Stakeholders Advocate Labour Laws Review


Stakeholders in the Nigerian oil and gas industry have called for the review of the labour laws guiding the industry to reflect international best practices.
The stakeholders made their position known during a two-day seminar jointly organised by the Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN) and National Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) in Port Harcourt,.
Speaking at the event, an expert in the oil and gas industry and labour leader Comrade Chika Onuegbu, said review of the labour laws would address issues of social insurance for workers, contract staffing among other sundry issues in the Nigeria oil and gas sector.
He said Nigeria as a country which depends on oil and gas resources as its major source of foreign earnings should also apply policies that would promote productivity in the sector.
Onuegbu pointed out that poor community development policies were the major cause of conflict between companies and host communities, and called on companies to always implement agreements reached with their host communities.
Also speaking, another stakeholder, Comrade Alex Agwornwor said the review of Nigeria’s labour laws would address some pertinent issues in the oil and gas sector, such as Unionisation and effective condition of service for workers.
Agworwnor who is the immediate past Chairman of the Port Harcourt zone of NUPENG, said most companies do not allow their workers to join unions of their choices, noting that such policies violate international labour laws and policies.
He also faulted a system where some companies operate without specified conditions of Service thereby subjecting workers to slave labour.
The labour leader urged the Federal Government and other stakeholders in the oil and gas industry to promote reforms in the industry towards effective service delivery.
He said NUPENG would not rest on its oars to protect the interest of its members.
“Our members have been facing threats of sack by some companies because of their insistence that things should be done the proper way, as a union we are resolute to stand behind our members in the face of any institutional humiliation,” he vowed.