As many have noted, a major culprit in the Nigerian tragedy is the
Royal Dutch/Shell oil company. Not only have they been one of the big
developers of oil fields right in the region were the executed
activists came from, they continue their activities after other oil
companies have withdrawn or suspended projects. Shell has no regard it
seems for human rights or the environment. Just today, the New York
Times has an article announcing that Shell is going ahead with a
US$3.8 billion natural gas development deal with the criminal
government of Nigeria.
The only thing that might have made Abacha and Co. think twice is if
their pocketbooks were threatened. Shell could exert more pressure on
them than all the human rights and democracy activists in the
world. Yet they choose not to.
If you recall, Shell was one of the last multinationals still
operating in South-Africa under Apartheid. I think this an undeniable
pattern of insulting disregard for African peoples' rights. I wonder
how deep an effect it would have on Shell's balance sheets if all
African's worldwide boycotted the company. Maybe not much, but the
memory of Saro-Wiwa and the others who lost their lives, and our
basic human dignity demand that we do. Please BOYCOTT SHELL.