08 Jun

Daily Watch – Shell gives up on Forcados repair, Bayelsa fails to honour agreement with workers

  • Royal Dutch Shell has said that it won’t attempt to repair a key pipeline in Nigeria for now after militants attacked it a second time last week. Shell’s CFO, Simon Henry, told Bloomberg that the company had to withdraw repair crews last week after a second attack against the 48-inch Forcados export pipeline that links onshore storage tanks with an offshore port. Shell’s resignation over the disabled pipeline suggests a new level of insecurity as a wave of violence hits the oil-rich Niger Delta, leaving production at its lowest level in nearly three decades. In the past, energy companies were able to repair pipelines after attacks, barring a few exceptions deep into the region’s swamps and creeks. The attacks are more destructive than in the past, Henry said. “There is clearly better organisation and targeting,” according to the CFO. An SBM analysis had indicated that the Niger Delta Avengers had better intelligence gathering capabilities than previous militant groups.
  • The NLC in Bayelsa may proceed on another strike next week over the state government failed to fulfil its promise of paying 50 percent salaries to them as agreed in a meeting between labour unions and the government more than two weeks ago. The unions in the state had suspended their strike and accepted the government’s proposal of paying 50 percent of owed salaries across board with effect from February this year. The four-day-old strike was suspended on May 23, 2016, following a meeting between the government and the unions. The initial strike started after the expiration of a 21-day ultimatum given over outstanding salaries to civil servants and pensions.
  • Niger has vowed to avenge the deaths of 24 of its soldiers who were killed by Boko Haram insurgents in one of the jihadist group’s deadliest attacks in the country. Speaking to troops, the country’s defence minister, Hassoumi Massoudou said that the country felt deeply wounded. Massoudou visited military positions in Bosso accompanied by army chiefs and Nigeria’s General Lamidi Adeosun, head of the multinational force that groups soldiers from Nigeria, Niger, Cameroon and Chad to fight Boko Haram. Twenty six Nigerien and two Nigerian soldiers were killed in the attack by hundreds of Boko Haram assailants on a military post in Bosso, Niger’s government said in a statement Monday. Some 67 soldiers were injured, while 55 Boko Haram fighters were killed and “many” injured.