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PENGASSAN set to tackle oil firm over employees’ disengagement



Members of Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN) may have resolved to challenge ExxonMobil over deliberate attempt to disengage its employees.

The association, in a statement, alledge it was disappointed with fresh disengagement letters served several Nigerian executives in the oil company, warning it was set to confront the management with a protracted labour dispute.

The union had on three occasions warned the multinational to desist from its various levels of discriminatory de-Nigerianisation stance, which has in the last three years, excluded Nigerians from performing strategic functions in the establishment.It was gathered that membership of the entire special review which determines the current spate of sacks, retirements and job losses are whites, saying there was no single black person in the team.

PENGASSAN sources indicated early in the week that the company has demonstrated a lot of impunity in its activities, to the extent of even ignoring court summons and appearances and has gone forward to relieve top Nigerians of their positions.The union said: “It is unfortunate that reported intimidation, harassment, bullying, witch-hunting and unethical practices, reported against the Special Review or investigation team by PENGASSAN was not investigated and addressed by the company.

“The demand of PENGASSAN communicated through our letter dated November 21, 2018 to suspend the review, was ignored and treated with utmost disdain.“Our sources can reveal that the company, which is now inundated with several legal issues relating to this, is not relenting in its plots of de-Nigerianisation, and has replaced its Nigerian security employees with a new arrival of over 30 foreigners posted within and outside the establishment. This development trails the occurrence, few months ago, where a good number of some lower employees were replaced in the same manner.”

The union said the action attracted a protracted legal tussle which the company eventually lost, even though it went on to accomplish its bidding.

“Our investigations indicate that the current spate of replacements and terminations are grossly against the Presidential order recently released by the Federal Government, which, among other things, seeks to enforce local content in procurement and employment among companies operating in Nigeria,” the union said.

However, the Manager, Media and Communications, Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited (MPN), Oge Udeagha, said: “It is MPN’s policy to provide equal employment opportunities, in conformance with all applicable laws and regulations, to individuals who are qualified to perform job requirements.“All matters relating to our employees are private, and we therefore decline to comment further on this issue.”

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