4 October 2011
OIL giant, Shell, has been accused of fuelling human rights abuses in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria by paying money and awarding contracts to armed militants, 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 exacerbated 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 Ogoni tribe.
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