PDVSA Workers Continue Protests

PDVSA workers continued in rebellion Friday for the third day, with street protests during their lunch hour and automobile caravans in the operational areas, the open revolt is against the appointment of the new board of directors of the Venezuela's oil company. PDVSA's President Gaston Parra and its board of directors issue a message to the all PDVSA employees calling for an understanding.

The president and the Board of Directors of PetrĂ³leos de Venezuela, in its meeting held on Thursday, February 28, agreed to address this institutional message to all PDVSA workers to call for serenity, in order to preserve the highest interests of the Corporation and the continuity of its activities, ensuring the respect all deserve by reason of their human condition, experience, and knowledge. Dialogue is imperative in order to become familiarized with the real motivations of PDVSA's Board of Directors and its intentions to forge creative work. The directors invite managers, professionals, technicians, and workers overall, to foster mutual knowledge, which is the only way to guarantee that PDVSA continue to be a stronghold whereby all venues are open to fruitful work in all fields of action and to the sensitive mission of those that must seek the points of coincidence needed to drive the Corporation towards levels of accomplishment that ensure the sustainability, social responsibility, and capacity to respond to the supreme interests of the Nation and its shareholders, i.e., all the Venezuelans. Respecting and ensuring meritocracy at all levels, complying with the contractual clauses, and acknowledging the deserved rights of workers, comprise important labor mechanisms needed by the Company. Therefore, PDVSA would like to reaffirm to all its workers in the various positions, labor stability and the broadest acknowledgment of merits as a fundamental element of career development which have always characterized PDVSA.

The president and the Board of Directors understand the concerns brought on by any change and, therefore, they call PDVSA personnel to an open and honest dialogue so that together we will find the most suitable path for the Industry, understanding that there is no other aim than the well-being of the country and the future of all Venezuelans.

Nevertheless, workers vowed to continue with the daily protests until the five new members of the board of directors decline their appointments. On Friday workers carrying banners reading, "meritocracy yes, politicization no," marched around PDVSA's Caracas offices, while in the main operational areas, like in Puerto La Cruz, workers also marched in automobile caravans in protest. PDVSA management and rank and file have expressed their reservations about Parra and the new board members, due to their leftist view of the oil industry. Parra is the fourth company president since Chavez took office three years ago.