Senior employees in the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR), Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA) and Petroleum Equalisation Fund (PEF) have kicked against the redraft Petroleum Industry Bill, PIB aimed at sanitising existing operations in the sector. The workers say the redraft bill will lead to job cut since it plans to combine the regulatory and monitoring roles of the DPR and the PPRA, while no word was mentioned in it as regards whether or not the Petroleum Equalisation Fund, PEF would be retained. The PEF is responsible for maintaining uniform pricing by the bridging cost between when the products are lifted and sold at the pumps.
“The union senses a subtle ploy to retrench or drop some of the work force transiting to the Nigeria Petroleum Regulatory Commission with the contentious clause on ‘transfer of certain employees.
“Cessation of employment and transfer of staff should be automatic and guaranteed as provided by the Public Service rules and Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria,” the workers under the aegis of the Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN) said.
Their statement issued by PENGASSAN Chairman, PPPRA Chapter, Victor Ononokpono, along with his DPR counterpart, Garba Bello said the “Petroleum Industry Governance & Institutional Framework Bill 2015” does not consider absorption or transfer of service for the work force”. The workers said they also observed that organised labour is excluded from being member of the Petroleum Regulatory Commission’s board, meant to govern oil operations as specified in the redraft bill.