RE:Shell Apologizes To Niger Delta of Nigeria
THIS DAY WAS LONG COMING!!!
My Dear Ogoni/Niger Delta People:
Greetings to you all! And congratulations for your foresight, determination, commitments to demanding respect for our land; the people, environment; our resources and existence. Congratulations to Ken Saro-Wiwa, 8 others and to Isaac Jaspa Adaka Boro and his men, who in 1966 waged a militant battle declaring the Republic of Niger Delta from Nigeria for same injustices which have been unresolved to this day.
Boro and other's bid for self-determination was crushed by the Federal Government/$hell's fire-power 12 days later. He's deliberately sent to the war front during the 1967-1970 Nigeria/Biafra civil war (because of our oil, which neither of the war mongers had). He's killed in 1968 with the hope that others of the region will not stand up anymore for their rights.
Saro-Wiwa and others were also murdered by hanging in 1995 even though he led a non violent and peaceful struggle for social, environmental, economic and political justice. These killings weren't lost on the people of Niger Delta and so the struggle continued because $hell and the Federal Government were recalcitrant and opposed every entreaties to change. Interestingly, change is one thing that don't change but continue to rock the world!
Meanwhile, Saro-Wiwa, “the big fish” was right introducing us, other Nigerians and Africans in general to the danger inherent in $hell/government conspiracy against our land and people. He's right therefore we're right and shall continue to be right! Ogoni/Niger Delta struggles are just and will remain justified irrespective of the methods applied. No one sits down and watch his/her mother or father beaten.
This apology by $hell may trigger a new dawn. Acts such as this is what I call corporate morality because those who run corporations such as $hell are individuals. Individuals are capable of learning and demonstrating moral virtues. Ironically, these men and women, who will not be happy if someone trample over their rights and land chose the path of dishonesty or to be amoral. They chose abuses; the violations of our rights, freedom, land and resources, etc. Gladly, the company has decided to sing a new song. We must however, watch how the song goes to calculate our dance steps. If for nothing, we're by $hell's confession and apology vindicated in all ramifications!
$hell's acceptance of corporate responsibility today (for human rights and environmental violations) shows corporations can no longer claim rights as human beings because they're not. They don't speak, eat, walk or do other things living beings do. They're just open buildings, legal entities owned, operated and work for or serve by human individuals. These individuals enjoy the moral actions of the corporations. They're also culpable and liable for the wrongdoings perpetrated by same…hence
Importantly, the company must take urgent steps to proof its apology is honest and a way of forging a new beginning based on truth. It must proof it's a way of demonstrating mutual respect, integrity, empathy, justice and accountability. It's true as the apology says that the Nigerian Government didn't one day hold the company accountable for any wrong doing; not even to recognizable and acceptable standards. The government prefers accepting bribes from the company (and the firm fell for it; and because of its influence on government) instead of implementing internationally acceptable rules and regulations.
Why? Because those who usurp power in Nigeria don't own the land where these resources are exploited. They don't experience the debilitating effects of gas flaring, water pollution and other forms of environmental degradation-not the intimidation, torture and extrajudicial killings. These successive cabals don't care about the people whose safety and protection are constitutionally entrusted into their hands. They permit the genocidal activities (destruction of lives, pollution of land, river, aquatics and other inhabitants) happen in Ogoni/Niger Delta because they don't believe in one Nigeria but the Niger Delta oil and gas.
Yes, Nigeria Government has a date to answer the same queries, charges we've placed against $hell. This company has been exposed and damaged its imaged to the extent that it can no longer hide under the cloak of power, ignorance, barrels of the guns and other gimmick of quixotic experiment. This shows power belong to the people and not corporations nor elective representatives. The people must nevertheless become aware of this power and apply it to the fullest. And the Niger Delta has done just that despite some betrayals.
The Nigerian nation has disappointed and betrayed Niger Delta. It's bitten the hand that feeds her because it's an irresponsible, unconscionable, greedy and artificially created nation whose peoples
were forced against their wishes to the behest and administrative benefits of the British colonialists (1914). It still has a chance to right the wrongs by toeing $hell path of open acceptance of responsibility and apology. Thereafter it must revisit and exonerate Saro-Wiwa and 8 others whose death was caused by $hell/government's reckless and deadly capitalistic activities so confessed to hereunder.
Failure to do these righteous things may spell doom to the nation's continued existence. of course the signs of the time is dictating disintegration for the country. Only openness, honesty and trust, mutual respect, justice, and a sense of belonging and protection can save it!
Finally, by $hell's confession and acceptance of guilt those who have demonized the Ogoni/Niger struggle and people have been put to shame! Consequently, I'm requesting that the company not only hold meetings to evaluate the extent of its damages in Niger Delta. It should also immediately put in motion machinery aimed at bringing international non-state bodies such as the United Nations, African Union, and Amnesty International to partner with its efforts. It must also invite other civil and environmental rights organizations/consultants including groups from the oil-rich Niger Delta to collaborate with its efforts at seeking lasting solutions based on justice for the people.
One way of doing so is to bring the above group under one umbrella as International Ad hoc Committee on Ogoni/Niger Delta saddled with fashioning out a way forward. That is a reliable and workable way to impress on the Nigeria Government to cede resource, environmental and
ecological control for the battered people. The Ogoni Bill of Rights (OBR) should serve as model because it's this long ignored document that the region based its demands. If this path is followed and justice served the much sought peace, development, growth and stability shall be realized.
Alternatively, a peaceful way of dissolving the forced marriage between the Ogoni/Niger Delta people and the contraption Nigeria must be worked out. It's against all co-existing rules for more than 300 different ethnic and sovereign nationalities to be forced into one union while only three (Hausa, Yoruba, and Igbo) wield authority over the rest. The dynamics of history, especially the former Soviet Union and Yugoslavia's experiences shows it will fail.
Ogoni/Niger Delta therefore demands practical justice now, after this groundbreaking confession and apology from $hell. There should be no gimmick, not this time! The same is demanded from the Federal Government of Nigeria and all other groups or companies which have oppressed and subjugated the people to a slave status in their Mother land.
Long live the ideas of Adaka Boro and Saro-Wiwa!
Long live Niger Delta!
Long live all peoples of good will in the world!
Long live freedom fighters without border!
Thank you all.
Ben Wuloo Ikari.
NB: Shell Apologizes: See the video on the link below;