The Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN) has shut down the headquarters of Chevron Nigeria Limited (CNL) following its failure to pay its workers’ entitlements.

Chevron has been in a web of industrial actions since its sack gale. It was reported that the company laid off about 70% of its staff. This led to nationwide protest after which oil unions intervened and cut down the number of staff that were laid off.

Although Chevron said it had engaged workers under PENGASSAN in discussions to understand and seek an amicable resolution to industrial action, the company is still being barricaded.

Spokesperson of Chevron Nigeria Limited (CNL), Sola Adebawo, said that CNL was already engaging in discussions with the union to understand and seek an amicable resolution of the issues.

“CNL confirms that on Tuesday, December 17, 2019, the CNL branch of PENGASSAN directed its members to stay away from work purportedly citing some industrial relations issues as the reason for their action. They have also prevented other employees who are not members of PENGASSAN from gaining access to the offices.

“This is a unilateral industrial action based on inaccurate information. CNL, in keeping with its commitment to resolving issues through meaningful dialogue and respect for the rule of law, is engaging in discussions with the Union to understand and seek an amicable resolution of the issues.”

Why this matters: The strike of workers at the Nigerian unit of Chevron could affect oil production, as Chevron has 350,000 bpd shares in the country’s total output.

Commenting on the development, a worker at Chevron said that if the company did not act fast, it could risk shutting down. The employee made known that all they were asking for was the yearly entitlements of the workers.

“The workers are entitled to certain allowances in every December and January but the management has refused to pay.”

What you should know: Chevron is the third-largest oil-producing company in Nigeria. It has 40 per cent participation in eight onshore and shallow offshore fields as well as three operated and six non-operated deep water blocks in the country.