Nigerian oil workers strike over attacks, kidnappings

Kenya MapLagos - Oil workers in Nigeria's oil-producing Niger Delta went on strike Monday to complain about a lack of protection from militant groups who attack oil facilities and kidnap workers.

Several hundred employees of oil company Total picketed the company's office in Port Harcourt despite union officials delaying industrial action due to begin Monday, local media reported.

Militant groups often attack oil installations and kidnap expatriate workers in the Niger Delta, saying they are fighting for a greater share of profits from oil exploitation for the poor of the region.

Nigeria cancels South Korean oil exploration rights

Korea National Oil CorporationSeoul  - The Nigerian government on Thursday rescinded oil exploration rights at two fields off the Nigerian coast that were granted to South Korean firms four years ago.

Justifying the move, the Nigerian government said the Korea National Oil Corporation (KNOC) had not made payments as scheduled, according to the KNOC. Allegedly, the KNOC only paid 192 million dollars of the 323 million price that had been agreed upon.

The KNOC says the agreement had only been for 192 million dollars. KNOC says part of the deal called for it to help develop Nigeria's energy infrastructure.

Mob attacks home of Nigerian censor-defying director

NigeriaNairobi/Abuja - A mob has has raided the home of a film director jailed for defying Islamic censors in northern Nigeria, local media reported Monday.

Hamisu Lamido, known as Iyan Tama, is serving a 15-month sentence for releasing a film without the approval of the Kano State Censor's Board.

A mob of over 30 men late last week broke into his home and threatened his wife and children, a family friend told Leadership Nigeria.

Nobody was injured and nothing was stolen in the attack.

Lamido was jailed in December, but his lawyers are appealing the sentence.

India, Nigeria for enhancing oil sector cooperation

India, Nigeria for enhancing oil sector cooperationNew Delhi, Jan. 14: India and Nigeria have expressed keen desire to take forward the existing cooperation between the two countries in the hydro-carbon sector.

At a bilateral meeting held in New Delhi on Tuesday with Dr. Emmanuel O. Egbogah, Adviser to the President on Petroleum matters, Additional Secretary in the Petroleum and Natural Gas Ministry S. Sundareshan informed that in the two blocks awarded to ONGC Mittal Energy Ltd. (OMEL), the company has strived to fulfill its obligations.

Pirates take French ship, nine hostages off Nigeria

Pirates take French ship, nine hostages off Nigeria- Pirates off the Nigerian coast have seized a French ship and taken its nine crew members hostage, the ship owners said Monday in Paris.

The ship, which conducted transport of materials and personnel for oil companies, was taken Sunday night, shipping company Bourbon said.

The crew includes five Nigerians, and men from Ghana, Cameroon and Indonesia. They were reportedly in good condition.

Nigeria is Africa's most important oil producer, with reserves estimated at 36 billion barrels.

Teething mixture kills more Nigerian babies

Teething mixture kills more Nigerian babiesAbuja  - The number of babies who died after being administered a locally made teething mixture in Nigeria has risen from 25 to 34, the state-run food and drugs regulatory agency said Wednesday.

Dora Akunyili, Director-General of the National Food and Drugs Administration and Control, said the additional deaths were recorded at one of Nigeria's oldest medicine training institutes, the Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital in Zaria, where eight had died earlier.