February 28, 2021

Fuel queues emerge in filling stations after petroleum workers declare strike

A filling station in Jos flooded with cars at about 10pm

Fuel queues on Monday started to appear in filling stations in Jos hours after the Petroleum and Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN) directed its members to withdraw their services nationwide.

The strike follows the failure of government to meet agreements reached with the union on the implementation of Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS), an information Communications Technology (ICT) based salary payment option, initiated by the Federal Government of Nigeria (FGN) “to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of payroll administration for its Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs)”.

The Academic Staff Union of Nigeria is currently on strike, against the new method, which PENGASSAN is also opposing.

In a letter dated November 8, 2020, tagged “RE: Breach in Agreement on IPPIS Implementation and Redundancy in Baker Hughes,” Lumumba lghotemu Okugbawa, the General Secretary of PENGASSAN referred to the Union’s earlier letter dated November 2nd, 2020 which gave a 7-Day ultimatum to resolve all issues regarding the new system.

“Regrettably and upon the expiration of the ultimatum, nothing concrete has been done with regards to the outstanding issues as enumerated in the letter,” said the official.

The strike action has left only few private filling stations to operate, with many of them overstretched.

Motorists struggle to get fuel at an only active filling station in Jos on Monday night

Officials at the Nigerian National Petroleum Commission earlier said they had over 2billion litres of fuel to disburse throughout the ember months but PENGASSAN in its letter calls all its branches to comply with the directive to go on strike.

But with the emerging fuel queues, fuel prices are feared to spiral.