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Talks ongoing to end oil workers' strike

17 December 2014, 14:09

Abuja - The Department of State Services (DSS) is currently meeting with the management of Total Plc with a view to ending the ongoing oil workers’ strike.

Marilyn Ogar, the Deputy Director, Public Relations of the DSS, disclosed this at a news conference on Tuesday in Abuja.

She called on Nigerians who had good relations with the oil giant to appeal to it not to bring hardships on the citizens over "inconsequential issue".

Ogar said that PENGASSAN and NUPENG had written to the service in November complaining about the transfer of its zonal executive in Port Harcourt, Ms Elo Ogbonda.

According to her, Ogbonda was transferred from Port Harcourt to Lagos by the company after she was elected as the zonal executive of PENGASSAN.

"The transfer was seen as a design by TOTAL to frustrate her (Ogbonda) from performing her functions at the union’s secretariat in Port Harcourt.

"Consequently, this service summoned the Managing Director of TOTAL, Elizabeth Proust, on November 5 to resolve the dispute.

"It was agreed that Ogbonda would be reinstated, posted back to Port Harcourt and granted leave of absence for the period she would serve as an executive of PENGASSAN," Ogar said.

Also read: Government urged to stop impending fuel scarcity

She said that PENGASSAN later informed the service that the company reneged on the agreement to recall Ogbonda.

"The service contacted TOTAL and was informed that the company will not go back on the sack order.

"All entreaties to the company failed, thus culminating in the current strike and its attendant scarcity,’’ she said.

The DSS spokeswoman, however, said the service will not stand aloof and see Nigerians suffer.

The President of PENGASSAN, Francis Johnson could not be reached, however, NUPENG’s President, Igwe Achese, confirmed that Ogbonda was transferred and subsequently sacked.



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