Militants Threaten to Blow Up Lamalco’s Ocean Vessels, If…
Recalcitrant militant group, Coastal Revolutionary Force (CRF) has threatened to blow up an ocean going vessel belonging to Lamalco Nigeria Limited, an oil servicing company in the Niger Delta region over unsettled issues.
The militant group said the oil firm risk blow up of its vessel over alleged plan to continue casualization of workers from the Niger Delta region.
The group in a statement, also expressed displeasure over the alleged relocation of the company’s headquarters from Port-Harcourt to Lagos.
The statement said that if the company’s management did not rescind its plan, they would within the next few days plant explosive on the firm’s vessel situated at an undisclosed location in the Niger Delta waterways.
It could be recalled that a statement signed by Comrades Isaac Aberare and Bayo Olomoshile, Acting General Secretary and General Secretary respectively of NUPENG and PENGASSAN had alleged that Lamalco management was allegedly forcing its member-staff to join the Nigerian Seafarers Collaborating Unions (NSCU).
This, according to a statement signed by ‘General’ Seiya Gbentua and ‘General’ Akpan Edidem, contravene the verdict of the National Industrial Court in Lagos which sue for stay of execution notice till Federal Appeal Court trashed the matter.
The militant group stressed that Lamnalco Nigeria Limited and its affiliates, Delta Afrique and Smith Lamnalco cannot force its loyal staff to join unsolicited union in what we know is a plot to casualise and bite the finger that fed it to growth in its 21 years of existence/operations in the Niger Delta.
The militant’s statement read in part: “We hereby place the Chairman and Directors of Lamnalco Nigeria Limited on notice to distance themselve from the actions of the Managing Director, Mr. Ian David Hugo, by sacking him and hence halting the anti-Niger Delta policies he is made to embarked on by vested interests”.
“Otherwise, the Board of Directors should be prepared to share the blame with the MD for the coming serial attacks on its vessels from Lagos to Calabar for which we will give no further notice”.
“We would see which is better between human policies and engagement of security forces for your company protection, when the battle line is finally drawn”the militant group threaten.
“Implementing articles of agitation before, during and after the Kaiama Declaration of the Niger Delta over the years, we kept being confronted with the pleading/reprimands from our brother-employees of Lamnalco Nigeria Limited not to pursue Lamnalco from our waterways”.
“It could be recalled that an encounter sometime led to death of our brothers namely Capt James Nwosu and Tonprema (Able Seaman).
“It is unacceptable that after sacrifices to make Lamnalco grow from humble beginnings to expanded fleet of vessels and contracts both in Nigeria and abroad in Senegal, Sierra Leone, Gabon, the company wishes to pay back with a plot to dump our brothers”, CRF noted.
The group alleged that unknown to people, Lamalco management sponsored Lagos NIC verdict was step towards reducing local/indigenous content in its workforce and grant same to non-Niger Delta interests”.
It warned Chevron, Exxon Mobil, Elf, Total, Shell and other oil companies in business with Lamnalco Nigeria Limited “to beware that without reversal of Mr. Ian David Hugo’s plans, their further dealings/investments with Lamnalco and allied companies may go up in smoke”.
Meanwhile, in a letter dated March 18, 2013, NUPENG/PENGASSAN said Lamnalco Nigeria Limited’s undated circular letter, stampeding its staff to join NSCU and alleged attempts to force some to be inaugurated as Executives of Maritime Unions amounts to “interference” which is against International Labour Organization (ILO) conventions.
According to NUPENG-PENGASSAN, ILO convention 87 of 1948 in articles (i) and (ii) noted that “workers and employers, without distinction whatsoever, shall have the right to join trade union of their choice without previous authorization” adding that “public authorities (Government and its agencies) shall refrain from any interference which would restrict this right or impede the lawful exercise thereof”.
In its appeal to Lamnalco to keep the status quo or risk an industrial crisis in the Oil and Gas Industry, NUPENG/PENGASSAN said Lamnalco’s actions violated ILO convention 98 of 1949 as management was supporting a rival organization against it. Section 2 of the said convention states that “in particular, acts which are designed to promote the establishment of workers’ organization under the domination of employers or employers’ organization, or to support workers’ organization by financial or other means, with the object of placing such organization under the control of employers’ organizations shall be deemed to constitute acts of interference”.
The joint oil workers association said it would fight to protect the will of Lamnalco staff not to joint the NSCU and their desire not to have their check off dues deducted from their salaries in favour of unions under NSCU.