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Nigerian Oil Union Calls Off Strike

On Monday, Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (Pengassan) started an indefinite strike to protest the firing of its employees and unfair labor practices by domestic companies.

But it looks like that that strike lasted only few hours since the Pengassan, one of the country’s major oil unions, said that its members had what they wanted after negotiations over a dispute with the government and local oil company.

Union members went on strike after talks between the labor union, government officials, and Neconde Energy, ended in a deadlock this weekend.

Apparently, the suspension of the strike came after the intervention of government officials where Neconde management offered a letter of recalling the sacked employees of the company. Pengassan’s Public Relations Officer, Fortune Obi, said in a statement that the company’s management also agreed to allow the union to exist in the company.

Union and the government officials also agreed to resolve alleged anti-union posture by other indigenous companies and marginal field operators. The Pengassan statement also said that a meeting has been scheduled for second week of January next year to look at all the other contentious issues.

Earlier this month, Pengassan threatened that its members would go on a strike on December 18 in retaliation of a “mass sacking” of workers that had joined the organization. Pengassan had called on the government to force companies to rehire the fired union workers. The organization did not say how many of its members had been fired.

Nigerians were expecting supply shortages because of the strike and formed long lines at the fuel stations, according to Lagos-based CSL Research, as quoted by Bloomberg. The ongoing strike is not expected to affect Nigeria’s crude oil production.

By Damir Kaletovic for Oilprice.com

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