As a prospective Chemical engineer who has the passion of protecting our environment and lives from being lost, i was undergoing a research on the effect of gas flaring on the environment which you'll soon hear of, until i found out that almost everybody where discussing about the above subject and i decided to verify. It is said that he that looks through the mouth is the one that hears what is being said. Reading this report will tell you whether it is true or false. As such, i'd like you to go through this write-up and verify by yourself.
Shell petroleum, being the first to explore oil from Oloibiri in 1954 and being the number 1 oil flaring company in Nigeria has been accused of fuelling human rights
abuses in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria by paying money and awarding
contracts to armed militants men,
according to a new report published on Monday in London by a coalition
of local and international non-governmental organisations, led by a
London based NGO, the Platform.
Entitled “Counting the Cost,” the report implicated Shell in cases of
serious violence in Nigeria’s oil-rich Niger Delta region from 2000 to
2010, detailing how Shell’s routine payments to armed militants conflicts and led to the destruction of Rumuekpe town.
Shell was also accused of collaborating with the state in the
execution in 1995 of writer, Ken Saro-Wiwa and other leaders of the
Shell was said to have paid $15.5 million to the eight families in
settlement, and key documents implicating it never saw the light of day
during the trial.
Shell has, however, disputed the report, defending its human rights
record and questioning the accuracy of the evidence, even while it has
pledged to study the recommendations, according to its London office.
The coalition backing the report includes Centre for Environment,
Human Rights and Development (CEHRD), Friends of the Earth
Netherlands/Milieudefensie, Environmental Rights Action/Friends of the
Earth Nigeria, Social Action, Spinwatch and Stakeholder Democracy
According to Platform’s report, Shell continues to rely on Nigerian
government forces, which have perpetrated systematic human rights abuses
against local residents, including unlawful killings, torture and
cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment.
Key findings of the report include testimonies of contracts that
implicated Shell in regularly assisting armed militants with lucrative
payments, such as an alleged transfer of over $159,000 to a group
credibly linked to militant violence in late 2010.
Shell was also alleged to have, from 2006 onwards, paid thousands
of dollars every month to armed militants in the town of Rumuekpe, in
the full knowledge that the money was used to sustain three years of
A gang member, Chukwu Azikwe, told Platform that “we were given
money and that is the money we were using to buy ammunition, to buy this
bullet, and every other thing to eat and to sustain the war,” adding
that his gang and its leader, S. K. Agala, had vandalised Shell
“They will pay ransom. Some of them in the management will bring out money, dole out money into this place, in cash,” he said.
Platform alleged that in Rumuekpe, ”the main artery of Shell’s
eastern operations in Rivers State,” Shell distributed “community
development” funds and contracts via Friday Edu, a youth leader and
Shell community liaison officer.
By 2005, Mr Edu’s monopoly over the resources of the Shell Petroleum
Development Company of Nigeria (SPDC) was reported to have sparked a
leadership tussle with Agala’s group, with the latter reportedly forced
out of the community and a number of people killed.
The allegations, according to Platform, were largely substantiated by
a Shell official, adding that a manager with Shell confirmed that in
2006, one of the most violent years, Shell awarded six types of contract
Rumuekpe is just one of several case studies examined by the report,
which alleged that in 2009 and 2010, security personnel guarding Shell
facilities were responsible for extra-judicial killings and torture in
Meanwhile, a Nigerian environmental activist, Sunny Ofehe, standing
trial in The Netherlands for alleged plot to bomb pipelines in the Niger
Delta, has cried out, saying “I am not a terrorist or suicide bomber.”
In an e-mail made available to the Nigerian Tribune, Ofehe, who is
also the founder of Hope for Niger Delta Campaign, said his travail was
traceable to the parliamentary testimonies he gave at the Dutch
parliament about degradation of Niger Delta environment by Shell Oil and
other oil majors.
“I have been campaigning against environmental devastation of our
people’s environment for many years and testified at the Dutch
Parliament against Shell in a parliamentary hearing, where Shell was
summoned to defend its practice in the region,” he said.
He said less than a month after the hearing, “a team of about 30
policemen came to my house and arrested me on trumped-up charges and I
was detained for 14 days before being released, but remained a suspect,
adding that “when they could not establish a case against me, they came
up with a new charge of conspiracy to commit terror act by blowing oil
pipelines belonging to Shell in the Niger Delta.
“I became the first person to be charged under this law since it came
into effect in 2004. I appeared in court for the first time on
September 5 and we now have a new hearing date of December 5, 2011.”
After going through that, is it true to say that they are guilty?