Sen. Carlos Romero Deschamps, a member of the Institutional Revolutionary Party, or PRI, was re-elected as the leader of Mexico's STPRM oil workers union for the 2013-2018 term, union spokesmen said.

The union's 108 representatives met behind closed doors Sunday in Mexico City and voted to keep Romero Deschamps as the leader of the 140,000-member labor organization.

STPRM Local 34, which represents workers in the Valley of Mexico, congratulated Romero Deschamps on his re-election.

"You have our support and recognition of your efforts and leadership. With your focus and guidance, we commit ourselves to continuing to work for the unity of our union and the strengthening of Petroleos Mexicanos (Pemex)," Local 34 president Hector Sosa Rodriguez said in a statement.

"We are absolutely certain that with the direction and leadership provided by Carlos Romero Deschamps in this new term it will be possible to protect labor rights, and Local 34 of the STPRM will continue working for the well-being of workers and their families, but especially for the stability and improvement of their jobs," the union local said.

Romero Deschamps became the union's leader in 1996, replacing Sebastian Guzman.

He has retained the powerful union's leadership despite getting caught up in the so-called "Pemexgate" corruption scandal.

The scandal centered on the transfer of union funds to the campaign of PRI presidential candidate Francisco Labastida, who lost the 2000 election to Vicente Fox, of the conservative National Action Party, or PAN.

Romero Deschamps has run the union for nearly 20 years even though he has been accused of illicit enrichment. EFE