Reports of a planned protest by Petroleum Tanker Drivers (PTD) have been denied by the Nigeria Union of Petroleum Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG).
According to Anaedoonline.ng, if Williams Akporeha, the current president, and Afolabi Olawale, the general secretary, continue in their positions, the tanker drivers have threatened to secede from NUPENG, their umbrella organisation.
Gbenga Olawale, an ex-officio member of the PTD from the Ibadan depot, stated in a statement on Sunday that in order to underline their demands, their members would start a statewide demonstration.
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Olawale claimed that because Akporeha is not a member of NUPENG, she is unable to serve as the union’s leader.
However, NUPENG stated in a statement released on Monday and signed by its General Secretary, Afolabi Olawale, that tanker drivers have no intention of staging a protest.
The union claimed that the rumours of a planned statewide protest are the fabrication of desperate people who want to scare the public and create a false shortage of fuel.
NUPENG informed the public to disregard such rumours, stating that there is no rift in the Union despite what certain desperate people and their backers would have them believe.
The statement reads: “The leadership of the Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers and the Petroleum Tanker Drivers Branch of the Union are hereby informing the general public that there is no plan whatsoever by the Petroleum Tanker Drivers to embark on any protest.
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“There is no division in the Union as some desperate individuals and their sponsors want to project. The information is false and unfounded.
“This clarification is compelled in view of the attention of the leadership of both the NUPENG and PTD Branch of the Union that was drawn to this very misleading, mischievous and unfounded online news of the purported protest of the Petroleum Tanker Drivers across the country.
“The news item is false, unfounded and should be ignored. It is intended to create panic in the public and cause artificial scarcity.
“All the Petroleum Tanker Drivers are fully committed to the national services of effective and efficient distribution of petroleum products across the country.
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“We earnestly call on the security agencies to urgently fish out the writer of this very misleading and panic-creating news item and make him face the full wrath of the law if he or she cannot prove the source and authority of the fake news item, which is very capable of creating social upheaval and security concerns.”
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