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NUPENG plans training of members to bridge skill gap in oil sector

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NUPENG’s National President, Williams Akporeha

Plans are underway by the Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG), to build the capacity of its members to take up high-end positions in the oil and gas industry. 

The National President of the union, Williams Akporeha, who stated this at the celebration of the 40th anniversary of NUPENG in Abuja, urged unions in the sector to train their members adequately in order to take full advantage of the Nigerian Oil and Gas Content Development Act, 2010, and the Presidential Executive Order No. 5 of 2018. 

His words: “Since the industry requires skilled staff in many areas both the NUPENG and PENGASSAN should invest in the training of their members to acquire the requisite knowledge in petroleum technology. To that extent, both unions should ensure that scholarships are given to deserving Nigerians by the PTDF to acquire requisite knowledge in petroleum technology.” 

Under the Presidential Executive Order No 5 for harnessing domestic talent and development of indigenous capacity across all sectors of the economy, the Minister of Interior has been prohibited from giving visas to foreign workers whose skills are readily available in Nigeria, and that Nigerian employees shall be given first consideration in the oil and gas industry. 

The NUPENG boss also highlighted that the dominance of the oil and gas sector by foreigners and International Oil Companies (IOCs) would not cease until the Nigerian people and all workers are prepared to ensure the enforcement of the Nigerian Oil and Gas Content Development Act, 2010 and other relevant legislations and policies.

He hinted that the comparative advantage NUPENG has in petroleum marketing business would be leveraged upon to float businesses that would create jobs and generate revenues for the union to execute its projects. 

He added: “In the light of this, it is in our plan of action to build in some strategic places in some of our major cities, mega filling stations with all modern facilities. This we believe will also help to reduce the pressure of job creation on the government. 

“It is our firm belief that this will also help in the areas of job creation and empowerment of our teaming youths. In this regard, It’s our desired to build an ultra-modern tanker park in four zonal councils of our areas of operations in Lagos, Port Harcourt, Warri and Kaduna. We have already secured large expanse of land in Port Harcourt for these projects and other zones are in process. 

“This initiative when carried out and completed will help to create jobs for the youths, help in engendering the development of petty businesses for our women, save the state from the environmental hazards of indiscriminate parking of Petroleum Tankers in the country and also generate revenue into the coffers of every layers of government as each of the ultramodern parks when completed will accommodate parking space for not less than a thousand petroleum trucks with accompanied facilities like hotel, fire service station, restaurants, service bay/ station and other supporting facilities.”

The union opined that the failure of President Muhammadu Buhari to sign the Petroleum Industry Governance Bill (PIGB) into law is a major victory for the IOCs, which would have to do with new fiscal terms in favour of Nigeria, increasing local ownership of the oil and gas industry, and strict control of industrial waste and pollution of the old producing communities.


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