The Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) on Sunday issued a 21-day ultimatum to employers in the Nigerian oil and gas to address workers welfare to ameliorate their sufferings. The President of NUPENG Prince Williams Akporeha, said at a news conference in Lagos that over 500 union members had not been paid after working for some international oil companies.
Akporeha said that apart from not paying their salaries, the companies had continuously ill-treated the workers who were also casuals. He said the companies did not allow for unionisation, refused collective bargaining negotiation, non-payment of end of contract benefits and practice other anti-labour activities.
“This is alien to our extant industrial rules. Some of the workers have died, while others are roaming the streets because they could not get their money.“A prominent oil company which is among the debtors claimed that it cannot locate the contractor who hired the workers to do the job. This is sad,’’ Akporeha said.
He also said that the union was dismayed about the activities of some contract workers’ contractor that were engaged by some oil companies that had refused to pay workers their benefits after service. He urged the oil companies to prevail on such contractors to do the needful as it was criminal and a slap to the government.
The union leader added that it was unfair that the Nigeria Association of Road Transport Owners (NARTO) had failed to implement the 2016 agreement reached with the union on tanker drivers.“It is few months to the expiration of the agreement and Petroleum Tanker Drivers have shown considerable tolerance and endurance in the denial of their rights,’’ he said.
Akporeha said that the workers had risked their lives to contribute to development of the economy, especially in the downstream value chain. He said that the union was against multinational companies enslaving the workers and causing them to live in precarious conditions.
The union leader warned that the case would be reported to the world body to take decisive action if the organisations failed to respect the government and its laws and settle the workers. He said the ultimatum would take effect from tomorrow and urged the affected organisations to resolve contending issues to avoid further action.
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Heirs Holdings Signs $600 million Loans With Afrexim Bank, To Scale Its Energy Investments
As a further demonstration of the African Export-Import Bank’s (“Afrexim”) mandate to facilitate the growth of intra-Africa trade and support the development of African businesses, Afrexim today, signed financing facilities totalling US$600 million with the Heirs Holdings Group, a pan-African proprietary investment holding company.
Heirs Holdings has significant investments across Africa, in the financial services, resources, real estate and hospitality and power sectors. The facilities will further support the Group’s power, oil and gas strategy, as it positions itself as an African leader in integrated natural resources. The signing ceremony took place at the Afrexim Intra-Africa Trade Conference taking place in Cairo, Egypt.
The proceeds of the facilities will assist the Heirs Holdings Group vision of creating a dynamic resource based division, focused on ensuring value creation occurs on the African continent and that value chains are developed, that directly benefit the broader African economy and consumer.
Commenting at the ceremony, Dr. Benedict Oramah, President of Afrexim who signed on behalf of the Bank, stated that the investment by Heirs Holdings would play a key role in addressing some of the fundamental challenges that have affected the power and energy sectors in Africa. He stated that “A world class energy sector is fundamental to the sustainable growth of businesses in Africa. If we do not deal with these basic matters, growth of trade and exports will always be limited”.
Mr. Tony Elumelu, the Chairman of Heirs Holdings, commented that “We are delighted to be partnering with Afrexim. The Bank continues to play a critical role in the economic and social development of the continent. Together, we illustrate that Africa can create world class institutions, which are capable of successfully making the long-term investments necessary for Africa’s economic transformation and catalyse the enabling environment that will unleash Africa’s potential”.
UBA Academy Gets CIBN Accreditation for Excellence in Training, Capacity Building
In recognition of its high standard, quality of human resources development, training and capacity building, The Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria(CIBN) has certified and awarded UBA Academy the certificate of accreditation in line with the Central Bank of Nigeria’s Competency Framework for the banking industry .
UBA Academy, the dedicated learning and development centre of the Pan African financial institution, United Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc, was accorded the new recognition of excellence at a ceremony presided over by the President/Chairman of Council of the institute, Dr. Uche Olowu in Lagos on Thursday.
According to the president of the institute, UBA Academy was conferred with the new status having met the rigorous standards set for the delivery of their suites of programmes by the Institute.
The certification follows rigorous assessment exercise carried out by the institute’s Capacity Building Committee, the accreditation agency under the competency framework for the country’s banking and finance industry instituted by the Central Bank of Nigeria.
“This Accreditation is an affirmation that UBA Academy has adopted and complied with the minimum assessment standards for programmes run by the organisation, which have gained a label of recognition and distinction,” Olowu said.
According to him the accreditation of UBA Academy would enable its graduates to be eligible for exemptions from various subjects in the banking professional examinations thereby facilitating their completion of the Chartered Banker examination. “This will not only enable them comply with the provisions of the Competency Framework for the banking industry, it will go a long way in the strengthening of the intellectual resources and capabilities available in their institutions,” he concluded.
Speaking at the ceremony, the Bank’s Group Head Human Resources, Mrs Patricia Aderibigbe, while appreciating the recognition conferred on the UBA Academy, said the academy has already embarked on training for the future with digitisation of its training programmes and modules.
“With Ignite, UBA has taken training into the future as we believe that the only way to get the best results and continually stay ahead of the curve is to continually sharpen our most important asset – our people, using mobile technology,” Aderibigbe said.
Aderibigbe promised that UBA Academy will continuously seek improvement in ensuring that it serves the needs of industry in a changing banking industry.