The Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Lagos and Delta states and other stakeholders in the downstream oil sector of the economy have assured the Nigerian Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) of support to complete the building of the union’s multi-million-naira eight-storey building within two years. Speaking at the ground-breaking ceremony of the tower, the managing director of the NNPC, Mallam Mele Kyari, represented by the managing director of the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency, Mallam Bala Wunti, noted that though the project was ambitious and daring, it was achievable.
He said the union , if focused, committed and consistent, would complete the project without any difficulty.
“NNPC will support the union all the way and will deploy every legitimate means in the actualisation of the building and will continue to collaborate with NUPENG to ensure that energy is delivered throughout the country,” he said.
The NNPC boss commended NUPENG for its untiring support and patriotism towards the delivery corporation’s energy to every nook and cranny of the country, stating that it would have been impossible without the union.
“We see the union not only as a partner, but a special brand, which has evolved over the years,” he added.
Representing the Lagos State governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, the Commissioner for Physical Planning, Idris Salako, assured the union that the state would fast-track all the documents necessary for the building.
He stated that the state considered collaboration and dialogue with workers as non-negotiable, hence the peace and tranquility in the state.
“Lagos is the first to pay the new minimum wage and we are even paying above the negotiated N30,000. We shall do whatever needs to be done with the approval process,” he said.
Delta State governor, Ifeanyi Okowa, who was also represented by the Commissioner for Oil and Gas, Emman Ngbaduba, equally affirmed that the project is achievable with cooperation among the members of the union.
He assured the workers that the state would support “the workers who are laying the golden eggs” as Delta realised their importance to the development of the state and Nigeria as a whole.
Earlier in his address, the president of NUPENG, Williams Akporeha, noted that the ground-breaking ceremony of the NUPENG Tower was a historic moment for the union.
He recalled that the construction of the tower was in fulfillment of the promise made when he was elected president of the union.
He said, “Today, the 12th day of December 2019 marks an important milestone in the annals of NUPENG, as we decided to lay very solid foundation for the erection of a befitting ultra-modern eight-storey tower for our great union. As we speak, construction work of our beautiful Kaduna Zonal Secretariat is at very advanced stage and we shall soon commission and occupy the secretariat to the glory of God and service to humanity.”