President Muhammadu Buhari says the Federal government will support the N1.5 billion Digital Library and Event Center project of the Petroleum and Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN).
The president gave the assurance at the 40th Anniversary of PENGASSAN in Abuja, on Thursday.
He was represented by the Minister of state for Petroleum Resources, Dr Ibe Kachikwu.
He said that government was happy with the role the union had been playing for the growth of the sector and the country at large.
“We are going to support the N1.5 billion E-library and Event center project that you want to build.
“This is the only way we intend to support your youth empowerment programme,” he said.
He added that the federal government recognizes the role and contribution of Technology sector to the Gross Domestic product (GDP) of the country.
According to him, the idea of the digital library is a step in the right direction.
He noted that PENGASSAN as the pioneer labour union in the country had exhibited an exceptional character in facilitating normalcy in the downstream sector.
He added that the Association had made various sacrifices and contributed in building up the sector especially in ensuring NNPC reform, Local Content, and regulation of contracts.
“You have been working together with NNPC, the ministry and have ensured steady supply of products and have helped in abating proposed strikes,” he said
In his address, PENGASSAN president, Mr Francis Johnson, said that the union since inception had contributed majorly to the growth and development of the nation.
He said that the E-library and Event centre project was one of the unions move to ensure youth empowerment and job creation.
He said that library will be located in Port Harcourt, Warri and Kaduna adding that apart from employment, it would help the growth and development of the oil and gas and other sectors of the economy.
Johnson said that PENGASSAN had been in the struggle that brought democracy in the country and had continued to support government.
He called on Nigerians to ensure they participate in the 2019 election and also vote for credible leaders.
Also, in his remarks, Dr Maikanti Baru, Group Managing Director of NNPC also commended the union for showing interest in sustainability and management of business in the sector.
“This commitment has helped in active production and enhancement of workers’ salaries and growth of the economy.
”The contribution you made in the Petroleum Industry Bill (BIP) cannot be over emphasised and I want you to continue in the good work, ” he said.
Baru noted that N1.5 billion E-library and the Event centre was a good project as it showed good combination and balancing in carrying out your work.
“While the E-library is for intellectual property, the event center helps one to relax the body.
”This completely alien with the NNPC life balancing style that helps to enhance productivity.” he added
NAN reports that the union honoured some of its members that contributed in the struggle and Nigerians who have done well for the sector.