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PENGASSAN to Shell: We’ll resist attempts to sell assets without resolving issues affecting workers

PENGASSAN to Shell: We’ll resist attempts to sell assets without resolving issues affecting workers
January 23
19:39 2024

The Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN) says the Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria (SPDC) must address all issues affecting its employees before selling its assets. 

The association‘s demand was in a statement jointly signed by Festus Osifo, its president, and Lumumba Okugbawa, its general secretary. 

On January 16, 2024, oil giant Shell announced its agreement to sell its Nigerian onshore oil assets to a consortium of local companies for over $1.3 billion.

According to Shell, the buyer of the asset, known as Renaissance Group, is a consortium formed of ND Western, Aradel Energy, First Exploration & Production (E&P), Waltersmith, and Petrolin.

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Reacting to the deal, PENGASSAN said its Shell and Shell Nigeria Business Operations (SNBO) branch further communicated all subsequent information “presented to our members by Shell Management on the planned sale”.

The association said it conducted a preliminary research, evaluated the presentation, and assessed the situation.

Consequently, the union said the consortium is “unknown to us”, adding that it is an assemblage of unknown entities “with no proven track record in managing such diverse assets”.

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The union also rejected the terms affecting employees that were communicated in the presentation to its members.

“One of the companies that made up the assemblage has a history of subjugating workers and subjecting them to untold hardship as exemplified in the current management of OML 34,” the statement reads.

“Another company in the group has a penchant for preventing workers from unionising and thus stiffening their condition of services.

“Any attempt to transfer the assets without resolving issues affecting our members will be met with the stiffest resistance the industry has ever witnessed.

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“The group must come clean with its intention(s) and be ready to have serious engagement with the Association and not the jamboree that Shell Management is currently engaging in. 

“We have communicated to our Shell/SNBO Branches not to be distracted but to focus on the CBA negotiation that is due about a week from now.”

Therefore, PENGASSAN said it is putting the industry regulator, joint venture (JV) asset partners (Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited, non-operated asset partners), and other stakeholder, on notice.

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