Gabon’s oil worker union ONEP has threatened companies with strike action in December.
The union, in a press conference this week, criticised a number of companies, including Perenco and refiner Sogara.
RFI has reported ONEP may begin strikes at Addax Petroleum and Assala Energy on December 4.
As yet, there appears to be no impact on production.
Officials said Perenco had interfered in the “functioning of the union officials”. It also claimed a conflict of interest with the oil company. Furthermore, ONEP officials said a collective deal had been signed on October 13 with no employee consultation.
ONEP called for the transitional Gabon government to launch an investigation, with support from the oil ministry, into Perenco’s activities.
In reference to Sogara, the union officials claimed problems with representation and a refusal to engage. The refinery has also avoided the use of official employment organisations.
“If nothing is done … ONEP will use all legal means, including a strike”, officials said.
ONEP held a meeting on November 10, at which it agreed to move ahead with plans to mobilise. It officially warned of a strike on November 27.
Perenco declined to comment.
The union also named other companies as facing labour problems. These included Maurel et Prom, Total Gabon, Vaalco Energy, Addax Petroleum and BW Energy.
ONEP issued a strike notice to Maurel on November 22, it said. The disagreement stems from the sale of Assala Energy. The indefinite strike may begin on December 11 and would see work reduced by 40%, with no overtime worked. Should the company refuse to reduce production, ONEP has said, all workers would strike.
Maurel must pay bonuses to workers, reinstate benefits and improve living conditions on site, it said. The company has not responded to a request for comment.
ONEP also expressed concerns about the ending of Addax’s Dinonga-Iroundou licence, due to expire in early 2024.
“The law must be respected and the dignity of the workers must be restored,” it said. The union has complained of temporary contracts for workers, saying these are in violation of Gabonese law.
President Brice Oligui Nguema seized power on August 30. Since taking over, there have been reports of investigations into oil companies and their engagement with the previous regime.
Gabon’s oil minister Marcel Abeke visited Perenco in Port Gentil on November 21. The two sides have been talking about developing gas in Batanga and building a power plant.
In October, Gabon produced 216,000 barrels per day.