The Rivers State Government has ordered the release of 22 ExxonMobil workers who were earlier arrested and detained by security agencies and disclosed that they were set free due to the intervention of well-meaning Nigerians.
The oil workers were arrested by security agencies and detained on Thursday at the isolation centre in Port Harcourt for allegedly flouting the State government’s Executive Order on the restriction of movement into the state.
The State Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Prof. Zaccheus Adangor, said on Sunday said the government would no longer press charges against the 22 affected workers.
“The Rivers State Government on Sunday released the 22 staff of Exxon Mobil who were arrested for violating the State Executive Order restricting movement in the state.
“The ExxonMobil staff members were released without charges. The state government will no longer press charges against them. They were released following interventions by well-meaning Nigerians,” Adangor said in a statement issued in Port Harcourt on Sunday.
Adangor explained that he personally monitored the release of the 22 oil workers at the state Isolation Centre at the Yakubu Gowon Stadium in Port Harcourt.
He noted that the Rivers State Government remained committed to implementing the Executive Order issued to check the spread of Coronavirus.
Meanwhile, the Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria on Sunday suspended its planned industrial action following the release of the oil workers who were detained in the state.
In a statement jointly signed by the association’s President and General-Secretary, Ndukaku Ohaeri and Lumumba Okugbawa, PENGASSAN asked oil workers across the country to go ahead with their work.
It said, “At about 9 am this (Sunday) morning, April 19, 2020, with the intervention of relevant authorities, an unconditional release was secured for all our members held hostage in a most horrible and inhuman condition since Thursday, April 16, 2020, by Rivers State Government authorities.
“Having achieved the primary demand in our ultimatum, we hereby suspend the planned industrial action.”
PENGASSAN called on the Federal Government and industry stakeholders to guarantee unfettered movement of oil and gas workers on essential services in all territories of the federation if the workers would continue to provide these services.

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