Some private security guards of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) protecting oil pipelines along Abuja-Lokoja road, yesterday, staged a peaceful protest over non-payment of their 22 months’ salary arrears.
The protesting security men who converged on NNPC pumping station gate at Awawa in Kwali Area Council, barricaded the entrance of the station to prevent staff, petrol tankers and visitors from gaining entry into the premises.
Speaking on behalf of the protesters, Alhaji Abdullahi Kaja, said they were employees of MRS Limited who were engaged two years ago to guard the NNPC pipelines along Abuja-Lokoja road.
He lamented that they had risked their lives at night to guard the company’s assets but they were not paid their dues, explaining that other security guards doing same work at Warri, Port Harcourt and Katsina had been paid.
“The time we were working directly with NNPC our salaries were always paid as and when due, and we worked under good conditions, until MRS Limited took over the contract,” he said.
According to him, since the oil firm took over, there was no provision for even torchlights, raincoats and rainboots to enable them work, saying they bought the equipment they used themselves.
He appealed to the management of the NNPC to intervene and resolve the matter to prevent any break down of law and order.
When contacted, the Abaji depot manager of the NNPC pumping station, Alhaji Sani Mohammed, declined to comment, saying he was not authorised to talk to the press.
The executive director for operations of MRS Limited, Hajiya Amina Maina, did not pick calls or replied to a text message sent to her mobile phone.