Rivers State governor, Nyesom Wike has advised labour unions to use strike as the last option in trade disputes to stem the tide of development challenges witnessed as a result of the frequency of strikes.
Governor Wike also declared that his government would collaborate with National Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers, NUPENG, as it developed a tankers village at Eleme with a view to taking tankers off the highways and generating revenue.
Addressing the National Administrative Council of NUPENG led by its president, Comrade Igwe Achese, at the Government House, Port Harcourt yesterday, Governor Wike said he believed that workers should be allowed to unionise so that companies and organisations would be encouraged to always consider their welfare.
He said: “I believe that strikes should serve as a last option for unions during trade disputes. The strikes in Nigeria are getting too many and efforts should be targeted at reducing them.”
He appreciated the leadership of NUPENG for calling off their strike following his intervention, noting that the state government had already called on oil companies to reciprocate by recalling the sacked workers.
The governor further urged unions to always work towards the development of money spinning ventures to reduce their dependence on check-off dues for survival.
While expressing happiness that NUPENG was developing a tankers village/tank farm in Rivers State, he directed the state Commissioner for Energy and the special adviser on lands to work with the union to bring the project to fruition and ensure the release of certificate of occupancy for the project site.
He assured that the state government was working with relevant security agencies to ensure that Rivers State remained safe for investors, noting that strategies had been put in place to root out criminals from the state.
Wike further said that the state would work out amnesty for criminals and cultists who lay down their arms and embrace peace.
Earlier, president of NUPENG, Comrade Igwe Achese commended the governor for his development strides in the areas of infrastructure and welfare of workers.
He thanked the governor for intervening in the conflict between unions and oil companies in the state over the sack of their members.

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