Organised Labour in the nation’s oil industry has opened up on the raging controversy over the appointment, remuneration and tenure of the Group Chief Executive Officer, and the Chief Financial Officer of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company, NNPC, Limited, Mallam Mele Kyari, and Mr Umar Ajiya, respectively.
Labour, on the platform of Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers, NUPENG, and the Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria, PENGASSAN, informed that the appointment, remuneration and tenure of Kyari and Mr Ajiya were in line with Section 59(3) of the Petroleum Industry Act, PIA, 2021.
NUPENG and PENGASSAN said they decided to speak following several calls and text messages by journalists seeking to know Labour’s position on the information published in online media regarding the appointment, remuneration and tenure of the Group Chief Executive Officer and the Chief Financial Officer of the NNPC Limited.
In a joint statement on Tuesday by the General Secretaries of NUPENG and PENGASSAN
Afolabi Olawale, and Lumugba Okwugbawa, respectively, the two Unions said “We wish to state here without any fear of contradiction, and in the interest of the growth of the oil and gas industry and our dear nation’s economy, that the appointment of Mallam Mele Kyari and Mr Umar Ajiya was in line with section 59(3) of the Petroleum Industry Act 2021.
“It is for a tenure of five years, and this was consequent upon the emergence of NNPC Limited as a commercial company totally different from its pre-PIA defunct NNPC, which also in some ways affected our rank and file membership who were in NNPC but now in NNPCL.
“For clarity and correction of the wrong impression being created in the public space, the duo of Mallam Mele Kyari and Mr Umar Ajiya have gloriously served in different capacities for many years in the employment of the NNPC with unambiguous conditions of service which include gratuity on exit from the Corporation.
“Immediately they exited, from the old corporation where they were previously employed, their exit packages were paid in line with established rules and conditions of service.
‘Their current appointments are fully in line with the provision of PIA and their conditions of service are also in line with the provision of the new NNPC Limited as approved by the NNPC Limited governing board.
“Mallam Mele Kyari and Mr Umar Ajiya like any other Nigerians deserve to be considered for appointments in line with established rules and regulations and so far they have not been found wanting in the discharge of their duties or committed any crime, we urge Nigerians to ignore the mischief makers and join hands with other patriotic Nigerians to help the nation and the good people of this country derive the maximum returns from our God-given natural resource.
“As critical stakeholders in this industry, we celebrate the inspirational turnaround and reforms that the duo brought to the then NNPC and now to NNPC Limited.
“These reforms do not just ensure that NNPC Limited was turned around from serial financial losses to profit-making, the welfare of our members has been greatly improved.”