The Petroleum Tanker Drivers arm of the Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) has suspended its ongoing strike as NNPC approves an increase of tanker drivers' bridging allowance.
Officials at the meeting
The President Muhammadu Buhari-led Federal Government, has on Monday, March 3, announced the immediate increment of the bridging cost allowance (an allowance paid to marketers for the transportation of petroleum products from the storage depots to retail outlets across Nigeria) payable to petroleum product marketers.
While speaking at the opening of a meeting between NNPC management and leaders of the Petroleum Tankers Drivers, the Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, Maikanti Baru, said the allowance was raised from the current N6.20 per litre to N7.20 with immediate effect.
Revealing further in Abuja in his opening remarks during the meeting with PTD - a section of the Nigerian Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers, NUPENG, Maikanti said the decision to raise the bridging cost was a goodwill gesture by the federal government to demonstrate its commitment to resolve all issues affecting their smooth operations.
“I’m happy to announce to you that the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Ibe Kachikwu, has just approved the increase of bridging cost allowance from N6.20k to N7.20k.
“This is a good platform for you all to discuss the issues. We expect that with this, you will call off the strike immediately,” Mr. Maikanti told the oil workers.
“I plead with you to ensure that your discussions should be guided by national and not personal interest,” he added.
The Petroleum Tanker Drivers arm of the Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) has also suspended its ongoing strike.
The NUPENG President, Igwe Achese, made the announcement after the extensive meeting between the group and the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation.
The tanker drivers had commenced an industrial action earlier on Monday to press home their demand for improved welfare.
Achese, who announced over the weekend that members of the union would withdraw their services, raised concerns that Nigerians may experience another round of fuel supply crisis.
He noted that the grouse of the drivers are poor working conditions and welfare package among others. The NUPENG President said the Federal Government has ignored several appeals by the union to help improve the welfare of the drivers.
The meeting was also attended by representatives of the National Association of Transport Owners, NARTO, the employers of the drivers, that the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Ibe Kachikwu, has already approved the increment.