Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers, NUPENG, weekend lauded President Muhammadu Buhari for signing Executive Order 5 with the intent to improve local content in public procurement as well as in the application of science, technology and innovation towards achieving the nation’s development goals across all sectors of the economy.
NUPENG in a statement by its President, Prince Williams Akporeha, urged that all relevant agencies should be compelled to implement to the letter the new Executive Order without delay and hindrance to foster value creation and addition in the Nigerian human capital development and utilisation for material resources and services.
The union also pleaded with the President to issue an executive order on casualisation, outsourcing and other unfair labour practices, especially in the petroleum industry. The statement read in part: “We salute the courage and patriotism of Mr President for prohibiting the Ministry of Interior in the Executive Order, from giving visas to foreign workers whose skills are readily available in Nigeria; and that where expertise is lacking, procuring entities will give preference to foreign companies and firms with a demonstrable and verifiable plan for indigenous development, prior to the award of such contracts. “It is indeed worthwhile to see this laudable presidential directive recommending that consideration shall only be given to a foreign professional, where it is certified by the appropriate authority that such expertise is not available in Nigeria.
“The President should however not hesitate to ensure all relevant agencies are compelled to implement to the letter the new Executive Order without any form of delay and hindrance so as to foster value creation and addition in the Nigerian human capital development and utilisation for material resources and services.
“We also use this veritable medium to appeal to President Buhari that the application of the Local Content Law is strongly geared towards the creation of decent permanent jobs for Nigerian workers. The prevalence of casual/ indecent jobs in Nigeria, particularly in the Nigerian Oil and Gas industry is appalling and highly disturbing.” in view of the high expectations and premium, we collectively placed on Nigeria Content Development and Management Board right from the various struggles for its creation.
“The current increasing youths disenchantment and frustrations evident by the rising tide of cultism, killings, kidnapping, suicide attempt, armed banditry, advance-fee scam, prostitution, and other social vices bedeviling our national life are derivatives of glaring failure of institutions and agencies that are responsible for the creation, protection and sustenance of decent jobs for Nigerian youths.
“NUPENG as a key stakeholder in the Oil and Gas industry whose members have suffered varying infractions from the hands of different multinational companies as a result of infringement on the local content laws have good reasons to express profound gratitude to a government that obviously demonstrated firm sensitivity and responsiveness to the plight of its citizenry and ready to bring succour, particularly to our members who have experienced neglect from successive administrations under whose watch workers went through harrowing socio-economic and psychological torture with no respite.
“The rank and file members of our Union will not hesitate to drag out and engage any individual, institutions or agencies that attempt to frustrate this patriotic and well-intentioned executive order of President Mohammadu Buhari.”