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PTD Raises Concerns Over NUPENG’s Election Venue Decision and Open Ballot Choice

An elder, Comrade Joseph Dagogo-Jack in the Port Harcourt Zone of Petroleum Tanker Drivers (PTD) branch of Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) has accused the General Secretary of the parent body, Afolabi Olawale of bias, insisting that the union ought to maintain neutrality in electoral contest between candidates.

He added that the choice of election venue (Lagos), date, and the adoption of an open ballot system for the delegates’ conference are totally unacceptable for the PTD members.

“Telling candidates not to print posters or run campaigns for an election has clearly made the process look like a mere selection and not an election. Our National delegates conference has always been held in Abuja, why Lagos? We also don’t want an open ballot, we want an election in which each person votes and no one else knows who they have voted for. The court said all petitions, suspensions and query letters remain null and void, nothing has changed yet. Similarly, the petroleum trucks belonging to Comrade Osesua Lucky, Comrade Gayyab Garga, Comrade Olabisi Akinlolu, Comrade Humble Obinna Power and others are still not being allowed to load at the depots, this is purely contempt of court” he stated.

Dagogo-Jack who had a meeting at a popular hotel in Victoria Island, Lagos on Friday with some of the eligible and bona-fide delegates in the forthcoming July 3 PTD election said NUPENG’s leadership has flagrantly dishonored the ruling of Hon. Justice O.Y Anuwe who gave a verdict on Wednesday May 29, 2024 that the union should conduct an all-inclusive and non-discriminatory election for the Tanker Drivers at the national level.

According to him, “The global best practice for electoral umpires is that, it must avoid creating the impression that it has no respect for neutrality in an electoral contest between candidates. This brigandage style introduced by Olawale Afolabi will further plunge PTD into another round of crisis, that is why I am supporting all our candidates and members who are calling on DSS and the Ministry of Labour and Employment to serve as umpire and returning officers for this upcoming election. As we speak NUPENG is yet to reconcile the Lucky Osesua and Augustine Egbon factions of PTD, what kind of a union is that? I am still worried why NUPENG hurriedly chose July 3 for the election. PTD truly needs freedom from the shackles of anti labour practices and oppression from some selected few in NUPENG.

“I understand that delegates are now being intimated, harassed, humiliated and even threatened, I therefore appealed to all those who have experienced this inhuman acts at their respective zones not to be silent about it, but to incident it at the nearest police station, we have already notified our lawyers and this oppressive and obnoxious style introduced by NUPENG leadership, we would surely approach the court to seek redress until justice is served.

“We have also petitioned the Minister of Police Affairs, Sen. (Dr) Ibrahim Gaidam, calling for his intervention in the ongoing leadership tussle in PTD and he is using his good offices to heed our concerns. He is also assuring us of support and protection from the men of the Police Force. We further urge all our members to be calm and law abiding, our freedom and victory are very near and by the grace of God we shall triumph over all our enemies who have selfishly made themselves enemies of progress and impoverished our members, in God we trust we shall never fail.” Dagogo-Jack stated.

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