New America Media
13 June 2011
The True Cost of Oil: Revisiting the Confict in the Niger Delta
Saro Nkesi still finds it difficult to talk about the years before he finally left Nigeria.
“During the period of 1993 to 1995, I was always staying in the bush and dashed home to eat and went back to the bush again,” he said. “Sometimes I would stay with other friends who were not from Ogoni. It was a terrible time in my life.”
Nkesi participated in nonviolent protests against Shell Oil’s operations in the Niger Delta’s Ogoniland. He sought to evade the Nigerian government forces that would sweep into Rivers State to suppress the popular resistance to decades of oil exploration unhampered by environmental, developmental or humanitarian concerns. But on one fateful occasion, he said, instead of finding him, “they saw my wife and they killed her.”