Itsekiri host communities in Warri South Council Area of Delta State said they can no longer guarantee the safety of newly recruited 1,050 refinery staff of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation deployed in various locations in the area.
The leadership of the various Itsekiri oil-producing communities comprising Ubeji, Aja-Etan, Ijala-Ikenren, and Ifie-Kporo, at a press conference in Warri on Wednesday, declared that they “can no longer guarantee the safety of new recruits pouring into our communities to be gainfully employed, while our children are made to serve them.”
They stated this in communiqué jointly signed by the Trustees Chairmen of the various Itsekiri communities, including Erewa Clement, Billy Ekenle, Prince Adolphus Tosanwumi, Clifton Edema and, Ofoyelu Izuagia, stressing unless their kinsmen are engaged, outsiders employed by NNPC will come at the risk of their lives.
They frowned at the decision by the NNPC to recruit new refinery staffs, “without deeming it necessary to give out any slot or allocation to the communities” at a time the corporation sacked about 850 indigenes from its workforce, many of whom it had used as casual workers for years.
The Itsekiri host communities demanded that their “kinsmen, who were unjustly sacked by WRPC, be reinstated to their duty posts immediately with an improved working condition.”
In case of failure to reinstate them, they warned, “NNPC should be ready to stop all operations at the Nigerian Gas Company, WRPC, NPDC, and PPMC.”
“We are ready to take on the NNPC this time around and we will deploy all available forces within our reach,” the Itsekiri host communities declared.