Cablegate: Nigeria: Nupeng Joins Department of Petroleum

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.




E.O. 12598: N/A

REF: (A) LAGOS 332, (B) LAGOS 344

1. (U) As part of a solidarity agreement between the two
major oil workers' unions, members of the Department of
Petroleum Resources (DPR) branch of the National Union of
Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) joined a strike
organized by DPR members of the Petroleum and Natural Gas
Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN). Despite
the walkout by approximately 600 NUPENG members employed by
DPR, NUPENG General Secretary Joseph Akinlaja said there are
no plans to call for a union-wide national strike, adding
that NUPENG is "not interested in punishing people over
government negligence."

2. (U) Two separate meetings were held on Wednesday,
February 19, to discuss issues involving unpaid salaries and
DPR autonomy. In Lagos, DPR Director Macaulay Ofurhie met
with workers and promised to pay all wages and allowances
outstanding before the end of February. However,
discussions in Abuja between PENGASSAN and GON officials
regarding DPR autonomy remain deadlocked. NUPENG will join
the discussions when talks resume on Thursday, February 20.
Labor and Productivity Minister, Alhaji Musa Gwadabe, and
Special Presidential Advisor on Petroleum, Alhaji Rilwanu
Lukman, will head the GON delegation at Thursday's meeting.

3. (U) PENGASSAN insists that the strike will continue
until the National Assembly moves forward with legislation
granting autonomy to DPR. If Thursday's talks fail, hope of
an early resolution could rest on Friday's meeting between
PENGASSAN and the Petroleum and Energy Committee of the
National Assembly. General Secretary of PENGASSAN, Kenneth
Narebor, told journalists yesterday that Friday's meeting
will determine future action. He said the union "cannot
just call off the strike without any meaningful achievement,
because we are not ready to embark on the process again".
Narebor said PENGASSAN has decided to suspend further
actions "that will escalate the already tensed situation
until Friday's meeting with the National Assembly Committee
on Energy."

4. (U) Comment: Although the GON will probably fall short
on PENGASSAN's demands, the National Assembly will probably
accelerate its review of DPR's demand for autonomy. DPR's
promise to pay outstanding salaries and a "good faith"
effort by the National Assembly to consider autonomy could
end the work stoppage. However, PENGASSAN's reluctance to
request that its entire membership join in a sympathy strike
despite an expired 72-hour ultimatum, demonstrates the
union's reported efforts to resolve the dispute without
creating a major industry-wide crisis. U.S. oil companies
have reported no reduction in operations stemming from the
strike. One source said his company has met all scheduled
loadings for its crude oil exports since the beginning of
the DPR walkout, and a relatively small-volume operator also
reports no disruption in processing whatsoever. End Comment.


© Scoop Media

World Headlines


Ethiopia: Conflict, Drought, Dwindling Food Support, Threatens Lives Of 20 Million

Hunger is tightening its grip on more than 20 million Ethiopians who are facing conflict in the north, drought in the south and dwindling food and nutrition support beginning next month, the UN food relief agency warned on Thursday... More>>

Euro Med Monitor: Syria Cross-border Aid Mechanism Extension Is Necessary For The Survival Of Millions

Permanent members of the UN Security Council should extend the cross-border aid to northwestern Syria, Euro-Med Human Rights Monitor said Tuesday in a statement...

Commonwealth Secretariat: Island Nations Urge Commonwealth Leaders To Bolster Ocean Climate Action
Small island nations are calling for strengthened global support for ocean and climate change action, just days before Commonwealth leaders convene in Kigali, Rwanda... More>>

World Vision: Deeply Concerned For Thousands Affected By Afghanistan Quake
World Vision is deeply concerned about the deteriorating humanitarian situation in Afghanistan in the wake of a powerful earthquake in the early hours of this morning... More>>

Malaysia: UN Experts Welcome Announcement To Abolish Mandatory Death Penalty

UN human rights experts* today commended an announcement made by the Malaysian government that it will abolish the country’s mandatory death penalty and encouraged Parliament to take concrete steps to pass the agreement into law... More>>

Ukraine: Bachelet Briefs Human Rights Council On Mariupol
Excellencies, Further to Human Rights Council resolution S-34/1 adopted at its 34th Special Session, I present you with an oral update on the grave human rights and humanitarian situation... More>>