Shell accused of poisoning Nigeria

This video is called Nigeria Shell oil spill – Celia and Emmanuel.

From daily The Morning Star in Britain:

Shell blasted for oil pipeline spills

Thursday 11 October 2012

by Our Foreign Desk

Nigerian farmers argued at the Hague’s Civil Court today that oil giant Royal Dutch Shell is liable for poisoning their farms and fishponds.

Pipeline leaks were responsible for polluting land and water in the villages of Goi, Oruma and Ikot Ada Udo.

Shell maintains that the leaks were caused by thieves illegally tapping its pipes and that its subsidiary in Nigeria cleaned up the mess.

But the farmers – backed by Friends of the Earth – said that the pipes were “seriously corroded” and the firm wasn’t maintaining them properly. They also said the clean-up was too slow, causing unnecessary damage.

Farmer Eric Dooh told reporters that on his property “if you are drinking water you are drinking crude. If you are eating fish you are eating crude and if you are breathing you are breathing crude.”

He said he hoped the court would “tell Shell to apply international standards where they are operating in Nigeria.”

Shell has long argued that the case should not be heard in a Dutch court at all but in Nigeria – but lawyers for the plaintiffs said the key decisions were made at the company’s international headquarters at the Hague.

If the court finds in favour of the farmers a separate hearing will determine what compensation and clean-up costs Shell has to pay – which would be the first time a Dutch company has been punished for the actions of a subsidiary abroad and pave the way for future compensation claims against transnationals.

7 thoughts on “Shell accused of poisoning Nigeria

  1. I have no way to determine who is at fault here but I know that locals tapping oil and gas pipelines has been going on in third world locations since the early 1950’s. It is a dangerous practice that often results in death and destruction.
    No matter, tapping or corroded lines, it should be easy to prove who is at fault. Now the clean up is another matter. If it was tapping then I am sure that Shell wants the government to take a share of the burden and in that case I am sure the government is delaying.
    We will soon get to the truth – – – one would hope!


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