The Rivers state capital, Port Harcourt, is currently facing fuel scarcity following the industrial strike by the National Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG), due to a disagreement with the state government over seizure of trucks allegedly being used to transport stolen products.
NUPENG and the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria, (IPMAN) on Sunday directed all stakeholders to shut down filling stations, truck movements other activities of its members in Rivers State from Monday, as a demonstration against the arrest of two tanker drivers and impoundment of about 14 trucks by the taskforce.
The taskforce was set up by the state government to reduce traffic on highways and roads within the state.
According to the Chairman of NUPENG, Port Harcourt Zone, Mr. Alex Agwanwor, his members were still detained alongside their trucks, which shows that the government failed to implement the outcome of their meeting.
“You are aware of the lingering issue between the government taskforce and the Union. As we speak our members are still in detention and their trucks still seized.
“Let the government release our members and their trucks. We are not after those arrested in illegal business, but those our members who they arrested without due cause.
“We embarked on this action to protect the interest of our members. We understand the plight of the masses which we are part of but, we want social justice for our members.”
However, Commissioner for Energy and Natural Resources, Dr. Peter Medee has expressed shock at the industrial action.
He said, “It is most unfortunate that those I regarded as very critical stakeholders are beginning to act in a manner that the state government is not comfortable with. These are people who have a series of problems, but when I came into office I resolved four important critical trouble they had.”