Former President of Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria, PENGASSAN, Dr. Brown Ogbiefun, has urged Organized Labour in the country to step up push for passage of the Petroleum Industry Reform Bill (PIRB) into law.
Ogbeifun who was also an Ex-Manager Industrial Relations, Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, as well as former first Deputy President General of Trade Union Congress of Nigeria, TUC, argued that passage of PIRB would guarantee radical reform in the oil and gas sector in the country.
The chattered conciliator and industrial relations expert, spoke at the 5th Triennial Delegates Conference, TDC, of NAPIMS branch of PENGASSAN in Benin city, Edo State in a paper titled; “Brief excursion into the oil and gas industry in Nigeria: The impact , challenges and prospects for labour movement”
According to him, the PIRB would address challenges around deregulation, oil subsidy, noting that the bill should make multinational oil companies refine 50 percent of their crude supply in the country.
While also calling for the Nigeria Liquified Natural Gas, NLNG, model to reduce government control of the refineries to enhance effectiveness, Ogbeifo said “Nigeria Union of Petroleum Natural Gas Workers, NUPENG, and PENGASSAN must drive towards eradicating corruption in the industry. In the most recent past, the unions mounted pressure on the federal government to fulfilling their joint venture counterpart of over $5billion without which many union members would have lost their jobs .
“Consultation and pressure on anti graft agencies to commence investigation on stolen oil funds, Nigeria has been said to produce 32.70bn barrels of oil valued at N118.49tnn in 47 years. Looking around us, one is at a loss on what the fund has been spent on with decaying infrastructure staring us at the face everywhere. This should worry you. Oil and gas unions are in a vantage position to interrogate how this fund has been applied”