Lagos, Nigeria (February 12, 2021). The lingering impasse between the indigenous
offshore drilling company, VALIANT Energy Services West Africa Limited and the
National Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) that seemed
protracted has finally been settled. This was disclosed early in the week via a
communique made available by the Commercial Manager of VALIANT, Mr Yele
The row was sparked by the laying off of 39 oil workers last year by
VALIANT following the global downturn in the oil industry as series of lockdowns by
countries were implemented to stem the Coronavirus pandemic. Nonetheless, after
series of deliberations with NUPENG, an agreement was reached on October 16, 2020
between Valiant and NUPENG over the terminal benefits that will be payable to the
To this end, Valiant as a responsible corporate organisation, met all obligations of the
agreement and paid in full all outstanding severance benefits due to the NUPENG
members. In spite of this, NUPENG at the time, still expressed dissatisfaction with
VALIANT on matters outside the provisions of the agreement, which had been fully
met by VALIANT. So, rather than acknowledge the resolution of all matters with the
payment of all outstanding monies, the impasse between both companies lingered.
With the continued impasse, a virtual reconciliation meeting brokered by the
Department of Petroleum Resources was held on January 19, 2021. At the meeting, all
the grievances were heard by all parties and were amicably resolved. NUPENG
further acknowledged receipt, in full, of all outstanding severance benefits from
VALIANT due to its members, the disengaged workers.
The management of VALIANT and NUPENG both agreed that the whole matter was
regrettable but there was a collective resolve to work together in peace and harmony.
Comrade Williams Akporeha, representing NUPENG, agreed that social dialogue
remains the best path to dispute resolution and looked forward to a smooth working
relationship between the labour advocacy group and VALIANT in the future.
On its own part, VALIANT restated a continued, unflinching commitment to the
welfare of its workforce – “a practice that is deeply enshrined in the corporate culture
of the firm,” according to Fafowora.
He added, “VALIANT has the reputation of a responsible corporate entity that has
held the welfare of its staff in high regard, always performing its statutory staff
obligations in a timely manner. Again, he alluded to various forms of support
VALIANT had offered the previous administration of NUPENG, describing the just-
ended face-off as regrettable but optimistic of a cordial relationship with NUPENG
“The relationship had always been cordial until this recent challenge. These
disengaged members of staff are some of the best hands across the industry but the
incident happened in response to the pandemic. We can’t fault anybody for that.
“Our work environment and culture at VALIANT have always been great, and I’m
sure, if given the opportunity again, every laid off staff would love to re-join the
company, Fafowora quipped.
Along with Akporeha and Fafowora, the witness to the reconciliatory meeting, Mrs
Joyce Odafe-Atebe, representing DPR, also joined in signing the communique.
Over time, VALIANT has offered best-in-class solutions to International Oil
Companies (IOC), drilling wells in various water depths across multiple energy hubs.
With a proven track record of safe and reliable delivery, VALIANT has established
itself as a distinguished indigenous firm with extensive in-country operational
experience. Over the last three years, the company has successfully drilled 16 offshore
wells for some of the largest IOC’s with a 100% Nigerian crew. As such, Valiant
continues to be a strong advocate for Local Content in the Oil and Gas Industry by
giving opportunities to capable Nigerians and organising training programs to broaden
the skills and competencies of the local workforce.
VALIANT is a 100% Nigerian owned multi-oil services platform established in 2013.
Behind it is a Nigerian management team with more than 25 years of expertise in oil
and gas operations in Nigeria, the Gulf of Guinea and the Mauritania-Senegal-
Gambia-Bissau-Conarky (MSGBC) Basin.
Valiant Energy Services West Africa Limited