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Posts under ‘Ogoniland’

Nigeria Oil Thieves Keep a Lid on Output Even as Bombs Abate

The Agbada oil flow station, operated by Shell in Port Harcourt, Nigeria. Photographer: George Osodi/Bloomberg

On top of that is the cost of clearing up the pollution from pipe ruptures. A 2011 UN study found that such an undertaking at Ogoni, just south of Port Harcourt, could exceed $1 billion and take 30 years.

By Paul Wallace: 20 July 2017, 05:15 BST

The Agbada 2 flow station should have been buzzing with activity, pumping crude to one of Nigeria’s largest export terminals. Instead it was idle in the muggy, mid-morning heat as Wilcox Emmanuel, the facility’s manager, shrugged in resignation about the thieves who’d shut him down.

As much as 30 percent of the oil sent by pipelines through the swampy Niger River delta is stolen, consultant Wood Mackenzie Ltd. estimates. That’s depriving the country of income amid a crippling recession and compounding the pain of a global price slump for Africa’s largest producer. read more

Ogoni 9 widow Esther Kiobel lands day in court against oil giant Shell

(CNN)The widow of one of the nine environmental campaigners who were executed by the Nigerian military government has won a 22-year battle to bring oil giant Shell to court.

Esther Kiobel filed a civil suit early Wednesday in the Netherlands where Shell is registered and has its headquarters, her lawyer told CNN. According to the writ, seen by CNN, Kiobel accuses Shell of complicity in the unlawful arrest and detention of her husband, Dr. Barinem Kiobel; the violation of his personal integrity and the violation of his right to a fair trial. Kiobel first filed a case in New York against Shell in 2002 alleging complicity in the execution of the nine human rights activists. However, in 2013, the US Supreme Court ruled that the United States did not have jurisdiction to try the case.

Condemnation

The 1995 execution of Nigerian playwright Ken Saro-Wiwa and eight other human rights activists (including Kiobel’s husband) campaigning against environmental degradation of their native Ogoni land caused worldwide condemnation. Saro-Wiwa came into conflict with the ruling junta when he campaigned for the Ogoni people living in Nigeria’s oil basin in the South. The popular playwright criticized Sani Abacha’s military government and the powerful oil industry, charging that it had polluted and destroyed the region’s land and wildlife. The men would later come to be known as the Ogoni 9 following their executions. Saro-Wiwa and the eight others put to death were charged with murdering four men. They were convicted and sentenced to death at a special tribunal. Throughout, Saro-Wiwa maintained that he was being framed for criticizing Abacha’s regime. Abacha ignored pleas for clemency for the men from world leaders including then US President Bill Clinton. Nigeria was promptly kicked out of the Commonwealth of nations — an organization made up of 52 countries that were part of the British Empire — following the executions. In 2009, Shell paid out $15.5 million to settle a lawsuit brought by the now late son of the deceased Ken Saro-Wiwa Jr. and others including the deceased’s brother. The suit had accused the global oil conglomerate of complicity in the imprisonment, rights violation and ultimately, death of Ken Saro-Wiwa and the eight others. The case took 13 years to reach settlement and Shell denied wrongdoing but said it was making the payment on humanitarian grounds according to a statement published in the New York Times.

Long struggle

Kiobel was not a plaintiff in that suit. She and three other widows have been assisted in their long-running struggle by human rights group, Amnesty International — a first for the organization. “It is one of our more remarkable cases. It is very difficult to find lawyers and courts willing to take these cases,” says Audrey Gaughran, acting Senior Director of Research, Amnesty International, in a phone interview with CNN. Gaughran remains hopeful that with the evidence gathered over the years and the location of the case, the judgment will be in the claimants’ favor. “We think Mrs. Kiobel has a strong case… we believe that Shell is complicit in the execution of her husband, Ken Saro-Wiwa and the other men who were executed in 1995. We are optimistic that the court will ultimately see the same argument.”

Positive outcome

Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) of Nigeria Limited, through its spokesperson, Precious Okolobo said in an email to CNN: “SPDC did not collude with the authorities to suppress community unrest and in no way encouraged or advocated any act of violence in Nigeria. “The executions of Ken Saro-Wiwa and his fellow Ogonis in 1995 were tragic events that were carried out by the military government in power at the time. “We were shocked and saddened when we heard the news of the executions. SPDC appealed to the Nigerian government to grant clemency. To our deep regret, that appeal, and the appeals made by many others within and outside Nigeria, went unheard.” Kiobel’s lawyer, Channa Samkalden is circumspect about a positive outcome. “It will be a difficult case, but it is also a very important one. The evidence shows how deeply involved Shell was in the activities leading to the death of the ‘Ogoni 9.’ “The fact that a court will assess that evidence and hold Shell to account will already bring some satisfaction,” she said in an email interview.

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Ken Saro-Wiwa 20 years on: Niger Delta still blighted by oil spills

Oil giant Shell sued by Nigerian widows for alleged complicity in executions of ‘Ogoni nine’

‘Shell and the military regime formed an alliance in the events leading to the deaths’, a writ filed at a court in The Hague alleges

Environmental activist Ken Saro-Wiwa was among those hanged

The widows of four men executed by Nigeria’s military regime in 1995 are suing oil giant Shell for allegedly aiding the army crackdown which led to their husbands’ deaths.

The women, led by one of the widows, Esther Kiobel, and supported by Amnesty International, filed a writ at a court in the Hague in which they are seeking an apology and unspecified damages.

Nine men, known as the Ogoni nine were hanged during the brutal military crackdown under the regime of dictator Sani Abacha. The hangings by a military court followed a peaceful uprising by 300,000 protesting against widespread environmental damage to the Niger Delta region caused by oil extraction. The incident provoked widespread international outcry. read more

Ogoni: Dutch Court to Investigate Shell’s Complicity in the Execution of Ogoni Nine

Ogoni: Dutch Court to Investigate Shell’s Complicity in the Execution of Ogoni Nine

Four widows of members of the so-called Ogoni Nine accuse Dutch oil company Shell of having been passive accomplices in the executions of their husbands in 1995. Ogoni activists such as Dr Barinem Kiobel and Ken Saro-Wiwa were sentenced to death by the infamous Abacha regime after they had participated in peaceful protests against Shell’s disastrous and reckless pollution of Ogoniland’s Niger Delta region. Nine prominent human rights defenders and activists had faced an unfair and biased trial, which had been harshly denounced by the international community and prominent human rights organisations. The widows seek reparation and accuse Shell of not only having turned a blind eye to their husbands’ cases even though the company had evidence of the Ogoni activists’ innocence, but also of actively encouraging the Nigerian regime to crack down brutally on peaceful Ogoni protesters. read more

Nigeria: Ogoni widows sue Shell over military crackdown

29 June 2017

The widows of four men executed by Nigeria’s military regime in 1995 are suing oil giant Shell for alleged complicity in a military crackdown.

The civil case, filed in The Hague in the Netherlands, argues that the company provided support to the army, which ultimately led to the executions.

Shell has repeatedly denied the claims.

Ken Saro-Wiwa was the best known of the nine men executed. He led protests against the environmental damage caused by oil production in the Niger Delta. read more

Widows of Nigerian activists launch civil case against Shell

June 29 at 5:50 AM THE HAGUE, Netherlands — The widows of four activists executed 22 years ago in Nigeria are launching a civil action in the Netherlands, alleging complicity by oil giant Shell in their husbands’ deaths, human rights organization Amnesty International said Thursday.

Amnesty said that Esther Kiobel is bringing the civil case at a court in The Hague along with Victoria Bera, Blessing Eawo and Charity Levula. The women are seeking a public apology and compensation.

Their husbands were among nine activists from the Ogoni tribe, led by writer Ken Saro-Wiwa, who were hanged in 1995 for the murder of four political rivals. Supporters say they were really targeted because of their involvement in protests against environmental damage by Shell’s Nigerian subsidiary. read more

IN THE DOCK: SHELL’S COMPLICITY IN THE ARBITRARY EXECUTION OF THE OGONI NINE

Oil giant Shell stands accused of complicity in the unlawful arrest, detention and execution of nine men who were hanged by Nigeria’s military government in the 1990s, Amnesty International can reveal today, following the launch of an explosive new case against the company in the Netherlands over four of the executions.

The civil case has been brought by Esther Kiobel, the widow of Dr Barinem Kiobel, and three other women. Esther has pursued Shell for 20 years over the death of her husband. He was hanged in 1995 along with the writer and human rights activist Ken Saro-Wiwa, and seven other men, collectively known as the Ogoni Nine. At the time the executions sparked a global outcry. read more

Shell faces court over Ogoni deaths

Royal Dutch Shell is facing a fresh legal challenge over alleged complicity in the execution of nine people killed by the Nigerian government after protests against the oil industry in the 1990s.

Esther Kiobel the widow of one of the “Ogoni nine”, has brought a civil case in the Netherlands. She fought a legal battle to have the case heard in the United States, but it was rejected in 2013.

In 2009 Shell agreed to pay $15.5 million to settle a separate action over the deaths, but it denied the allegations. read more

‎Widows of Ogoni leaders killed by Abacha sue Shell in Netherlands

Oladeinde Olawoyin

The widows of four of nine men executed by Nigeria’s military regime in 1995 have filed a civil lawsuit seeking compensation and an apology from Royal Dutch Shell.

The widows are Esther Kiobel, Victoria Bera, Blessing Eawo and Charity Levula.

According to a writ filed in a court in The Hague, the widows are seeking compensation from the company for alleged complicity in a military crackdown, leading to the deaths of their husbands.

The Nigerian military cracked down heavily on local opposition to oil production by a Shell joint venture in the Niger Delta region in the early 1990s. read more

Nigerian widows seek to sue Shell in Dutch courts

Shell was alleged to have helped in the arrest of Nigerian men who had sought to peacefully disrupt oil development in the region because of health and environmental impacts

Four Nigerian women are taking legal action in the Dutch courts against Anglo-Dutch oil giant Shell accusing it of complicity in the 1990s executions of their husbands by the Nigerian military, Amnesty International said Thursday.

The civil case has been brought by Esther Kiobel, the widow of Barinem Kiobel, who was hanged in 1995 along with writer and campaigner Ken Saro-Wiwa and seven others. Three other widows are also joining the action in The Hague.

A writ was set to be placed before a civil court in The Hague on Thursday alleging that Shell was complicit “in the unlawful arrest, detention and execution of nine men who were hanged by Nigeria’s military government in the 1990s,” Amnesty said in a statement. read more

Ogoni widows file civil writ accusing Shell of complicity in Nigeria killings

The widows of men who were hanged by Nigeria’s military government in the 1990s have launched a civil case against Shell, accusing it of complicity in their husbands’ executions.

Esther Kiobel, the widow of Dr Barinem Kiobel, and three other women whose husbands were hanged in 1995, served a writ in a Dutch court this week, following a 20-year battle with the oil giant.

Kiobel’s husband was executed along with the writer and human rights activist Ken Saro-Wiwa, and seven other men, who became collectively known as the Ogoni nine. They were hanged in a military court following a peaceful uprising by 300,000 Ogonis against Shell’s widespread pollution in Ogoniland. read more

Widows of executed Nigerian activists seek Shell apology, compensation

By Ron Bousso | LONDON

The widows of four of nine men executed by Nigeria’s military regime in 1995 have filed a civil lawsuit seeking compensation and an apology from Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L) for alleged complicity in a military crackdown, according to a writ filed in a court in The Hague.

The Nigerian military cracked down heavily on local opposition to oil production by a Shell joint venture in the Niger Delta in the early 1990s. The four widows allege that Shell provided support to the military in the crackdown that ultimately led to the executions of the men, known as the Ogoni 9. read more

Bar, business groups back Cravath on fighting disclosure of Shell documents

By Jan Wolfe

The New York City Bar Association has joined the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in backing law firm Cravath Swaine & Moore in its appeal of an order to turn over documents belonging to client Royal Dutch Shell plc in a possible overseas lawsuit accusing the oil giant of facilitating human rights violations.

The New York City Bar Association filed an amicus brief in support of Cravath on Tuesday in the U.S. 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals, urging the court to reverse a ruling that the law firm produce Shell documents to Esther Kiobel, a Nigerian woman seeking to sue Shell in the Netherlands after she was previously blocked from doing so in the U.S. read more

Geologist for Shell says company hid Nigeria spill dangers

BY MICHELLE FAUL: Associated Press: JOHANNESBURG: MARCH 24, 2017 7:36 AM

Royal Dutch Shell’s Nigeria subsidiary “fiercely opposed” environmental testing and is concealing data showing thousands of Nigerians are exposed to health hazards from a stalled cleanup of the worst oil spills in the West African nation’s history, according to a German geologist contracted by the Dutch-British multinational.

An environmental study found “astonishingly high” pollution levels with soil “literally soaked with hydrocarbons,” geologist Kay Holtzmann wrote in a letter to the Bodo Mediation Initiative. read more

WSJ: Shell report cites “astonishingly high” pollution from Nigerian oil spills

The former director of the cleanup project says Shell has denied him permission to publish the study’s results, which dictated a need for health screenings in the Bodo community.

Mar. 23, 2017 5:19 PM ET|By: Carl Surran, SA News Editor

Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A, RDS.B) oil spills that have not been cleaned up for more than eight years have contributed to “astonishingly high” levels of pollution in a Nigerian community, WSJ reports, citing a consultant who helped produce a confidential damage assessment for the company and its partners.

The former director of the cleanup project says Shell has denied him permission to publish the study’s results, which dictated a need for health screenings in the Bodo community. read more

How Nigeria Created the Insecurity in Ogoniland and How to Deal with It

This post is the opinion of Fegalo Nsuke, Publicity Secretary of The Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People (MOSOP).

The disharmony between Nigeria and the Ogoni people over oil may be a familiar terrain, the recent and heightened security situation in Ogoni may no longer be news. But what may not be well known is how the Nigerian government significantly contributed to the current insecurity involving armed bandits in Ogoni.

In the past one month, I have toured all parts of Ogoniland. From Nyokhana, to Ken-Khana, Gokana, Bori special area, Tai, Eleme and Ban Ogoi special area. Despite the largely inflated insecurity problem, it was glaring that there was little, insignificant Police presence in the Ogoni. read more

Shitstorm of Nigeria related litigation hits Shell

Shell is facing what Americans might describe as a shitstorm of lawsuits arising from its Nigerian activities since the 1950’s. Litigation is current or pending in Nigeria, the USA, Italy, the UK and the Netherlands.

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‘It’s payback time,’ says Nigerian king suing Shell

James Rothwell25 JANUARY 2017 

Nigerian tribal king has accused oil giant Shell of pocketing “blood money” after leaking pipelines allegedly polluted his community’s drinking water with deadly diseases.

Emere Godwin Bebe Okpabi, who is the leader of Nigeria’s Ogale people, has taken the Royal Dutch Shell company to the High Court in London as he says they are responsible for the “devastating” pollution.

The court will rule on whether the case is under the UK’s jurisdiction on Wednesday.  read more

Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Shell litigation

Posted on January 13th, 2017 by Sarah A. Altschuller

The name Kiobel is familiar to many who follow litigation regarding human rights in the United States. Esther Kiobel was a plaintiff in the Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum litigation that led to the 2013 Supreme Court decision which established that the presumption against extraterritoriality applies in cases brought pursuant to the Alien Tort Statute.

Ms. Kiobel is back in U.S. court, this time pursuing access to documents held by Cravath, Swaine, & Moore LLP, which represented Royal Dutch Shell in the earlier litigation. read more

Widow of executed activist wins access to documents in claims against Shell

Written by Reporter – 12/01/2017 3:31 pm

The widow of an activist executed after protesting against oil major Shell’s oil production in Nigeria has won access to legal documents.

They will be used in a legal case for damages against the oil giant which Esther Kiobel plans to pursue in the Netherlands.

It comes after a US judge told Shell’s US lawyers to handover the documents about Shell’s activities in Africa.

Kiobel has alleged Shell was complicit in the execution of her late husband, alongside author and environmental activist Ken Saro-Wiwa, by the Nigerian military in 1995 because it provided support and funding for the army in its crackdown of opposition to a Shell-led joint venture in the Niger Delta. read more

Shell’s attorneys ordered to give Nigerian activist’s widow files for Dutch lawsuit

By REUTERSPUBLISHED: 21:04, 11 January 2017

By Tom Bergin

LONDON, Jan 11 (Reuters) – The widow of an activist executed after protesting against Royal Dutch Shell’s oil production in Nigeria has won access to legal documents for use in a legal case for damages against the oil giant that she says she plans to launch in the Netherlands.

A U.S. judge in December told Shell’s U.S. lawyers to give Esther Kiobel documents about Shell’s activities in Nigeria, according to her lawyers and a court transcript obtained by protest website royaldutchshellplc.com and seen by Reuters. read more

Hope on horizon for Nigeria’s oil-troubled waters

Emily Gosden, energy editor

8 JANUARY 2017 • 10:23PM

In January 2015, Royal Dutch Shell agreed to pay £55m in compensation to thousands of residents of Bodo, a fishing community in the Niger Delta. Their livelihoods had been devastated by two oil spills in 2008-09 that had been caused by corroded Shell pipelines.

After years of high-profile wrangling, the landmark settlement was supposed to draw a line under one of the most toxic reputational issues for the Anglo-Dutch energy giant, and pave the way for the oil blighting the village to finally be cleaned up. read more

Shell battles Nigerian communities in high-stakes London lawsuit

By Karolin Schaps and Libby George | LONDON

A court in London will decide in coming weeks whether Royal Dutch Shell can face trial in the UK over oil spill allegations in Nigeria, a decision some legal experts predict could attract more cases against multinationals in Britain.

The High Court will judge whether members from two communities, Bille and Ogale in Nigeria’s oil-rich Delta region, can sue the Anglo-Dutch company in British courts.

The communities say Nigerian courts are unfit to hear the case against Shell subsidiary Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria (SPDC). Shell says the case should be heard in Nigeria because the matter is “uniquely a Nigerian problem”. read more

Shell Pipeline Fire Threatens to Deepen Nigerian Oil Output Drop

by Elisha Bala-Gbogbo and Paul Burkhardt

5 January 2017, 14:21 GMT

Royal Dutch Shell Plc shut the Trans Niger oil pipeline after a fire, threatening to worsen a drop in Nigerian output due to unplanned disruptions.

The line can transport about 180,000 barrels a day to the Bonny Export Terminal in the Niger Delta was halted Tuesday due to a blaze at Kpor in Ogoniland, Precious Okolobo, a company spokesman in Lagos, said Thursday by phone. Shell declined to comment on the impact on production. read more

Royal Dutch Shell plc: Human Rights in Delta Violated?

Heading into 2017, the presence of Royal Dutch Shell plc (ADR) (NYSE:RDS.A) is coming under intensified observation. Out of the many foreign energy giants operating in the Niger Delta, Shell is one that is the fulcrum of civil lawsuits, both existing and delayed.

Charges on the Anglo-Dutch oil & gas major are inclusive of corruption, violence of human rights, and environmental damage. The company is reported to have performed inhuman acts, demeaning treatment. Shell’s senior management cannot state that this came as a surprise, as it has been repeatedly warned.  read more

Shell appeals to Ogoni communities to halt oil theft, pipeline vandalism

December 25, 2016

A campaign against crude oil theft mounted this year by The Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Ltd (SPDC) has highlighted the dangers of crude oil theft and sabotage of pipelines to more than 40 communities in the four local government areas in Ogoni land – Khana, Gokana, Tai and Eleme.

“This public service campaign is a clarion call to people involved in crude theft in the Niger Delta, not only in Ogoni land, to stop destroying their land and heritage through pipeline vandalism,” said Osagie Okunbor, SPDC Managing Director and Country Chair, Shell Companies in Nigeria. read more

A devastating blow for Shell in U.S. Federal Court

See: Shell faces possible Dutch lawsuit over Nigerian activist’s execution

The Dutch Kiobel Case will allege that Netherlands-based Royal Dutch Shell and its predecessors were complicit in gross violations of civil liberties and human rights directed at Dr Kiobel and Esther Kiobel, including arbitrary detention and arrest; attempted rape; cruel, inhuman, and degrading treatment; and violations of the right to a fair trial and the right to life.  (Extract from petition)

Esther Kiobel holds Shell responsible for the murder of her late husband, Ogoni leader Dr. Barinem Kiobel. read more

The Nigerian King and a very brazen bid to squeeze millions out of Shell over pollution

By Rachel Millard For The Daily Mail7 December 2016 

Residents of the communities in south-east Nigeria remember clearly the day oil giant Shell first arrived in the 1950s.

Children could hear the rumble of the trucks from a distance, so they’d wave at the drivers as they passed.

It still happened when King Emere Godwin Bebe Okpabi, community leader of the Ogale community in Ogoniland, was growing up in the 1960s.

The region, largely marshland and swamps, was poor but the British firm, with its modern technology and skilled engineers, seemed to represent a new era of prosperity.  read more

Ogoni king: Shell oil is killing my people

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screen-shot-2016-12-03-at-21-12-03John VidalSaturday 3 December 2016 19.45 GMT

The stakes are high…

If the London judge hearing the preliminary arguments finds for the king then, in around one year’s time, Shell will have to defend itself in the British courts. The result could be a massive clean-up of Ogale, possibly millions of dollars’ damages and other polluted communities bringing their cases to Britain.

FULL ARTICLE

Shell Canada President Michael Crothers says Canada should stick to its values

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Shell Canada President Michael Crothers (above) says “Canada should stick to its values and do something to protect the environment, regardless of what policy tack the incoming U.S. president takes.”

See CBC News article: Canada shouldn’t lose resolve for a carbon tax, says Shell exec (Published 29 November 2016)

This is the most breathtaking hypocrisy on the part of Shell and Mr. Crothers.

Shell is responsible for nightmarish pollution of the Niger Delta in Nigeria. It has already settled related litigation and more is underway: read more

Pleased to assist Leigh Day in Suing Shell says John Donovan

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The High Court in London today began hearing the latest case against Royal Dutch Shell brought by the London law firm Leigh Day on behalf of Nigerian claimants.

Thousands of farmers and fishermen located in the Niger River Delta region who have suffered from oil spills and related toxic pollution. 

Leigh Day approached me last year making “an impassioned appeal” for my help, after first contacting me via Greenpeace.

This is not an unusual occurrence. Many parties contemplating or involved in litigation against Shell contact me after becoming aware of my Shell related website activities and a decades-long history of dealing with Shell, including its army of lawyers (over a thousand) and spooks (Shell Global Security and their external spy firm Hakluyt). read more

Shell seeks to block Nigeria pollution claims in London court

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By AFPPUBLISHED: 18:20, 22 November 2016

Anglo-Dutch oil giant Shell on Tuesday urged a High Court judge in Britain to block pollution claims brought against it by more than 40,000 Nigerians, demanding the case be heard in Nigeria instead.

Lawyers for the claimants are demanding action from Shell to clean up oil spills that have devastated their Niger Delta communities for decades.

But Royal Dutch Shell lawyer Peter Goldsmith told High Court of England and Wales judge Peter Fraser that the cases concerned “fundamentally Nigerian issues”, and shouldn’t be heard in London. read more

Polluted water in hand, Nigerian king takes Shell to court in London

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By Editor   |   22 November 2016  

King Emere Godwin Bebe Okpabi holds up a plastic bottle containing contaminated water from his community in Nigeria, proof of oil pollution that he blames on Royal Dutch Shell — and on which he hopes a London court will deliver justice.

“My people are drinking this water,” said the tribal king of the Ogale community in the oil-rich Niger Delta.

Okpabi has flown to London for a High Court hearing on Tuesday in which lawyers for more than 40,000 Nigerians are demanding action from Shell to clean up oil spills that have devastated their communities for decades. read more

Nigerian farmers, fishermen sue Shell in UK over pollution

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screen-shot-2016-11-08-at-20-51-26By ASSOCIATED PRESS22 November 2016 

LONDON (AP) — Emere Godwin Bebe Okpabi, leader of Nigeria’s Ogale people, unpacked four bottles of water from his homeland and lined them up on a table to show why his subjects are suing Royal Dutch Shell in a London court.

The Nigerian water is contaminated with oil and cancer-causing compounds such as benzene. It’s what his people drink every day.

Britain’s High Court will begin hearing lawsuits on Tuesday filed by the Ogale and Bille people alleging that decades of oil spills have fouled the water and destroyed the lives of thousands of fishermen and farmers in the Niger River Delta, where a Shell subsidiary has operated since the 1950s. They brought their fight to Shell’s home base because they say the Nigerian courts are too corrupt. read more

Shell fights lawsuits over Nigeria environmental record

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screen-shot-2016-11-19-at-17-13-56SARAH KENT: November 21, 2016

Royal Dutch Shell is fighting lawsuits this week in London and The Netherlands over its environmental record in Nigeria, highlighting the quagmire of problems the energy company faces there as it tries to pivot away from the West African nation.

The oil-rich Niger Delta has generated billions of dollars for Shell over the past 60 years, but the company’s operations have been plagued by sabotage, theft and oil spills that ravaged the local environment.

Though Nigeria was one of its most prolific regions for crude production in 2015, Shell has sold off tracts of onshore oilfields. Its new focus — sealed with the mammoth $US50 billion acquisition of BG Group this year — is deepwater wells off the coasts of the US and Brazil and a historic shift toward natural gas that puts it at the forefront of oil companies offering a more climate-friendly image to investors. read more

Shell case may launch wave of lawsuits

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By Emily Gosden, energy editor: 19 NOVEMBER 2016 

Royal Dutch Shell is facing a High Court battle over alleged environmental damage from its oil pipelines in Nigeria, in a test case that could open the floodgates to more multinationals being sued in London courts.

The oil giant and its subsidiary, the Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria (SPDC), are both being sued by two Nigerian communities, who are seeking about £100m in compensation after suffering repeated oil spills they claim came from SPDC pipelines in the Niger Delta. read more

Shell Fights Lawsuits Over Environmental Record in Nigeria

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By SARAH KENT: Nov. 19, 2016 7:00 a.m. ET

LONDON— Royal Dutch Shell PLC is fighting lawsuits this coming week in London and the Netherlands over its environmental record in Nigeria, highlighting the quagmire of problems the energy company faces there as it tries to pivot away from the West African nation.

The oil-rich Niger Delta has generated billions of dollars for Shell over the past 60 years, but the company’s operations have been plagued by sabotage, theft and oil spills that ravaged the local environment. read more

40,000 Nigerians take Shell to UK court over oil spills

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Online Editor: November 16, 2016

UK based oil firm, Shell, is facing fresh environmental claims in a London high court from two Nigerian communities who have suffered pollution episodes following repeated large scale oil spills from the oil giant’s pipelines in the Niger Delta.  

This is according to a statement released Tuesday by Leigh Day, a London based law firm, which was signed by David Standard, its head of media relations.

The two separate legal actions are being brought by law firm Leigh Day who represented the Bodo Community against Shell in an unprecedented environmental claim resulting in Shell agreeing to pay compensation package of £55million to the Community and 15,600 Nigerian fishermen whose livelihoods had been destroyed by Shell’s oil pollution.    read more

21st Anniversary Commemoration of Ogoni Martyrs

screen-shot-2016-10-19-at-10-26-17Text of a Statement By Legborsi Saro Pyagbara, President of MOSOP,  on the Occasion of the Memorial Service held  on November 11, 2016, in Bane, Ogoniland, for the 21st Anniversary Commemoration of Ogoni Martyrs and the passing away of Ken Wiwa Jr.

On 10th November 1995, the Ogoni nation suffered a devastating blow. The Nigeria government and Shell murdered nine Ogoni sons in cold blood for standing up for the truth and for justice. That action routed the world to see things for the first time in the way that we saw things. That singular action exposed the deep abyss of bestiality and brigandage in which Nigeria had sunk. That action signaled to the world that groups like the Ogoni people are imperiled and may not get justice, dignity and any sense of decency in this country called Nigeria. It demonstrated that the Nigeria system was not working for most of its people. read more

Ogoni monarch fingers Shell contractors as pipeline vandals

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By Austin Oyibode: 8 November 2016

Against the wide held view that youths of the Niger Delta are the arrow head of pipeline vandalism in the region, Chairman of Ogoni Traditional Rulers Council, HRM Timothy Suanu Bari Dam, has revealed that the contractors of Shell are the mastermind behind the massive destruction of pipelines in the devastated region.

Chief Bari Dam told NAIJ.com in Port Harcourt that he had personally confronted Shell in a recent meeting with company officials where he told them that contractors working for the oil firm and their close allies are the evil workers destroying the pipelines but leveling blame on youths of the Niger Delta. He said “I was in a stakeholders meeting with Shell and I told them that many of the pipeline vandalisation that is going on in Ogoni land is caused by them and their contractors. Those contracts are given to crooks, they pay money to some people and they allow the destructions go unhindered. read more

Hearing on Royal Dutch Shell: Committee Room 1, House of Commons Wednesday 2 November 2016

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screen-shot-2016-10-19-at-10-26-17HEARING IN THE HOUSE OF COMMONS WEDNESDAY 2nd NOVEMBER 2016

EXTRACTS FROM A CONFIDENTIAL EMAIL

Subject: JCHR: Claimant in case against Shell to detail experiences in human rights and business inquiry 

More here including House of Commons Library briefings

Watch live here 

Claimant in human rights case against Shell to detail experiences in human rights and business inquiry 

The Joint Committee on Human Rights continue their inquiry into human rights and business on Wednesday 2 November when they hear from John Gbei via video-link from Nigeria. 

Mr Gbei, and members of the Bodo Community in Nigeria, filed a successful lawsuit against Shell in London High Court for two oil spills which occurred in the Niger Delta in 2008 and 2009. The case resulted in an award of £55million; Shell having originally offered compensation of £4,000.  read more

Shell threatened with Dutch lawsuit over activist’s death in Nigeria

screen-shot-2016-10-26-at-17-50-47By Kathryn Higgins: 26 Oct 2016

Esther Kiobel has accused Shell of being complicit in the murder of her husband, anti-oil activist Barinem Kiobel who was executed by the Nigerian military in 1995. Court documents filed in New York last week show that Ms Kiobel plans to commence legal action against the company before the end of this year, with Shell’s home country the Netherlands the most likely setting for the legal showdown. The application in New York is an attempt to secure key documents from Shell’s lawyers that could be of use in the Dutch action. read more

Royal Dutch conspired with the Nigerian government

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Esther Kiobel filed a briefin the Southern District of New York on October 12 seeking permission to issue subpoenas against Cravath, Swaine & Moore. The request was for the production of documents for a lawsuit expected to be filed in the Netherlands. The lawsuit is connected to a previous case in which Kiobel was a lead plaintiff, Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum. In this case, Kiobel alleged human rights and civil liberty violations against the oil and gas giant’s operations in Nigeria’s Ogoni region. The Dutch case, expected to be filed in late 2016, intends to allege that Royal Dutch conspired with the Nigerian government to commit human rights violations against the Ogoni people. Cravath represented Royal Dutch in the U.S lawsuits and this application intends to obtain the discovery from those cases. read more

Son of Nigeria’s Ken Saro-Wiwa dies

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screen-shot-2016-10-19-at-10-26-1719 October 2016

The son of renowned Nigerian environmental activist Ken Saro-Wiwa, who was executed more than 20 years ago, has died in London.

Ken Saro-Wiwa Jr, 47, passed away after suffering a stroke, his family say.

He was a journalist who became a presidential adviser.

The 1995 execution of his father by a military government for leading protests against environmental degradation caused by the oil industry sparked global outrage.

Saro-Wiwa Sr led the Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People (Mosop), which accused oil multinational Shell of destroying the environment in his home region of Ogoniland in south-eastern Nigeria. read more

Esther Kiobel Torture Case Against Shell Returns to NYC: John Donovan’s role

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US COURT DOCUMENT FILED 12 OCTOBER 2016

Published Friday 14 October 2016.

MANHATTAN (CN) — Dusting off Supreme Court defeat following one of biggest human-rights battles in decades, a Nigerian woman accusing Royal Dutch Shell of conspiring to torture environmental activists in her homeland returned to New York to prepare for new litigation in the Netherlands.

Esther Kiobel filed her latest lawsuit in Manhattan Federal Court on Wednesday, seeking information to take on the oil giant near its international headquarters. read more

Shell faces possible Dutch lawsuit over Nigerian activist’s execution

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By Tom Bergin | LONDON

The widow of a Nigerian activist is planning to sue Royal Dutch Shell in the Dutch courts alleging the oil company was complicit in the execution of her husband by the Nigerian military in 1995, court documents filed in the United States last week show.

Esther Kiobel has filed an application in New York to secure documents from Shell’s U.S. lawyers, which she could use in the Dutch action.

The filings with the U.S. District Court for the Southern District Court of New York said she planned to begin that action before the end of the year. read more

Nigerian Militants Are Getting Ready to Strike Oil Again

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By Elisha Bala-Gbogbo: October 4, 2016

If the Nigerian government wants to fight militants blowing up oil pipelines, it should send troops into the creeks and mangrove swamps of the Niger River delta. Not the city.

That’s the suggestion of Babalola Olarewaju, a taxi driver who plies the airport route in Port Harcourt, the largest city in the restive oil-rich region.

“We’re talking about people who blow up pipelines in the night and then disappear,” said Olarewaju, 41, as he perched on the hood of his rickety cab outside the Le Meridien Hotel in the city center, referring to three T-72 tanks, Nigeria’s main battle tank, parked about a mile away. “What has a tank got to do here in the city?” read more

Introduction

screen-shot-2016-10-24-at-14-26-11EBOOK BY JOHN DONOVAN: SIR HENRI DETERDING AND THE NAZI HISTORY OF ROYAL DUTCH SHELL

INTRODUCTION

SUMMARY OF MAIN CONTENT

  • In the years leading up to WW2, the Dutch founder of the Royal Dutch Shell Group, Sir Henri Deterding became an ardent Nazi. He financially backed the Third Reich and met directly with Hitler on behalf of Royal Dutch Shell. 
  • As a major financial contributor to Nazi Germany in pre-WW2 years, the Royal Dutch Shell Group, under Dutch leadership, arguably had some indirect responsibility for the death toll in the subsequent war, in which over 50 million people perished.

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  • Shell publicly boasted at the time about the importance of its financial contribution to the German economy. The claims were made by Shell in Germany while the country was under Nazi control.
  • In years leading up to WW2, Shell conspired with partners, Standard Oil, and German chemical giant I.G. Farben, to covertly import oil products, including airplane fuel, from the US into Nazi Germany. The US government was kept in the dark.
  • I.G. Farben supplied the Zyklon-B gas used in the Holocaust to kill millions of people.
  • The portrayal in 2007 by Shell’s paid historians of a distant relationship between Deterding and Hitler, in which all attempts by Deterding to meet with Hitler were rebuffed is simply untrue.
  • In fact, their meetings included a four-day one-on-one summit held at Hitler’s mountain retreat, as reported by Reuters in 1934.
  • Deterding has been described by independent authors as “a hardline Nazi revered and ultimately mourned by Hitler.” That description is confirmed by the evidence within this book and evidence accessible via links.

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  • There are credible allegations that the Royal Dutch Shell Group, under the control of Dutch directors, used forced labor at its German subsidiary, Rhenania-Ossag. Many of its directors and staff were fanatical Nazis.
  • Royal Dutch Shell collaborated in the annexation and occupation of sovereign countries by the Nazis – Austria and Czechoslovakia – before the outbreak of WW2.
  • The donations and financial contributions to the Third Reich were all carried out under the control of Dutch directors of companies within the Royal Dutch Shell Group.
  • In 1936, while still a director of multiple Royal Dutch Shell group companies, Sir Henri purchased the Castle Dobbin estate North of Berlin for 1,050,000 Reich marks from Queen Wilhelmina of the Netherlands.

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  • Deterding moved into Castle Dobbin with his young German wife, Charlotte-Minna Knaack, his secretary, a fanatical Nazi said by one source to be a former private secretary of Hitler’s.
  • Sir Henri’s friend Hermann Göring, the founder of the Gestapo, regularly visited Castle Dobbin to go hunting with him. Deterding generously gave Göring the Rominten Hunting Lodge in East Prussia as a spectacular gift. Kaiser Wilhelm II once owned it.
  • In 1936 and 1937, Sir Henri – while still a director of multiple companies within the Royal Dutch Shell Group, in which he held a controlling interest – made huge donations of food (“millions of tonnes”) to Nazi Germany as part of the “Winter Help” scheme. A New York Times report in June 1937 (“Deterding to Distribute More Food in Germany”) specifically linked the food donations to Germany’s rearmament policy.
  • The massive donations enabled significant funds to be diverted at a time when the Nazi regime was engaged in urgent rearmament of its military might.
  • Seven thousand railway wagons were used in the first immense delivery.” 
  • Deterding died just before the outbreak of WW2. He was honored by a Nazi ceremonial funeral at Castle Dobbin in February 1939. It was attended by a full contingent of Royal Dutch Shell Group directors mingling with Nazi military officers.
  • A glowing tribute to Sir Henri on behalf of the German nation was inscribed on a wreath sent by Adolf Hitler. 
  • The Bishop who conducted the funeral service was a  supporter of Hitler and a rabid anti-Semite.
  • Film footage of the Nazi funeral spectacular exists.
  • Fears that the Nazis intended to exploit the death of Sir Henri, just before the start of WW2, to seize control of the Royal Dutch Shell Group, were well founded.  The UK National Archives has kindly given permission for related documents and correspondence to be featured within this book.
  • Dutch directors of the Royal Dutch Shell Group engaged in anti-Semitic policies against Shell employees and were also guilty of collaboration and appeasement.
  • Royal Dutch Shell employees in the Netherlands were instructed to complete a form that for some amounted to a self-declared death warrant. Many did not survive the war.
  • The Nazis did succeed in gaining control over Dobbin Castle.
  • In the latter part of WW2, Field Marshal Wilhelm Keitel, SS leader Heinrich Himmler and General Alfred Jodl, Chief of the Operations Staff of the Armed Forces High Command, were all stationed at Dobbin Castle.

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  • Hitler’s final despairing message from his Berlin bunker, a day before he committed suicide, was sent to Field Marshal Keitel at Dobbin Castle, whilst it was still owned by the Deterding family. Strangely, that somehow seems appropriate.
  • Evidence was on display at Castle Dobbin, signed by Hitler, confirming Deterding’s financial support for the Nazis. Also a personal testimony by Herman Göring acknowledging the generosity of his friend and benefactor, Sir Henri Deterding.

DETERDING’S PALATIAL UK RESIDENCES

Kelling Hall, in Holt, Norfolk, shown center, was one of Deterding’s palatial UK residences. It is located near the Sandringham estate of the British royal family.

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Built for Sir Henri in 1913, in grounds of 1,600 acres, the property was sold in 2008 by his grandson James Deterding for £25 million (over $37 million USD).

Deterding at various times owned a Dutch estate in Wassenaar near the Hague, a grand country home in Buckhurst Park in Winkfield, near Ascot in Berkshire, a fashionable apartment in Park Lane, London, and a villa at St. Moritz in Switzerland. read more

Shell Shuts Down Bonny Light Pipeline

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cropped-Screen-Shot-2016-09-09-at-20.58.10.jpgBy Irina Slav – Sep 27, 2016, 10:05 AM CDT

Shell’s Nigerian division has shut down one of the two pipelines that carry Bonny light crude to its Forcados terminal in the Niger Delta, saying a fire was detected “on the right of way” of the pipeline. The shutdown will take 180,000 bpd off Shell’s Nigerian exports.

At the same time, the company continues to refuse to confirm or deny an announcement from the Niger Delta Avengers from Saturday that they’d blown up a Bonny Light pipeline. Shell has two pipelines bringing crude of this blend to Forcados, and the fire was detected at the Trans Niger Pipeline. It remains unclear whether the fire is a consequence of the NDA attack or if the attack was on the other pipeline. read more

Nigeria: Rethinking NNPC’s Oil Search in the North

Screen Shot 2016-08-23 at 11.21.47The Niger Delta, which largely dominates the oil-rich Gulf of Guinea, did not join the league of other oil-producing regions in the United Kingdom’s North Sea, United States’ Gulf of Mexico and the Middle East’s Persian Gulf through the efforts of the federal government or the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).

It was the private sector-led initiative that catapulted the Niger Delta to its current influential position in the global energy dynamics.

The NNPC, which started as the Nigerian National Oil Corporation (NNOC), established by Decree No. 18 of 1971 before the NNPC Decree of 1977 was promulgated, did not initiate the search for crude oil in Nigeria. read more

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