A group, the Delta State Peace Movement, on Friday gave the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation and the Warri Refining and Petrochemical Company a 14-day ultimatum over the sacking of 400 causal staff.
The group threatened that it would embark on mass protests with 7,000 youths from the host communities if the companies fail to call back the workers.
Sunday PUNCH learnt that the support/casual members of staff were dropped by the organisation during the first two weeks of the lockdown occasioned by the dreaded coronavirus pandemic to create room for permanent employees who were said to have resumed work on May 4.
The group handed down the ultimatum in a statement signed by its Chairman and Secretary, Chief Moses Akpojovwe, and Mr Oritsegbemi Awaori, respectively.
The statement read in part, “The DSPM has asked NNPC management and its subsidiary to be ready for what will happen next since they don’t have respect and regards for the traditional throne.
“We are letting the world know that two weeks from today, 7,000 youth match will be carried out within all NNPC subsidiaries in Delta State if they fail to recall the sacked workers and regularise their working condition.
“How can a Federal Government company sack its workers because of the newly recruited 1,000 employees, many of whom are their children and relations?”
“We noticed that such warning was given to the WRPC management last year but they ignored it and the movement worked with other bodies to ensure that there was a total shutdown of operation twice last year, which has made the refinery not to be operational since then.
“We are assuring NNPC management that it will be a mass protest should NNPC/WRPC management refuse to act within the said two weeks.”