Ballad of the Black Gold

New from Talib Kweli, this hard-hitting music video unpacks the story of  of Nigeria’s oil curse, the Ogoni struggle and the complicit role of Western governments and companies. Warning: this video contains strong political language.

Nigerian Regulators Need Real Powers

Breaking years of silence, politicians and regulators in Nigeria are talking tough on oil spills in the aftershock of the BP disaster. Officials had stern words with Shell over its inadequate clean-up activities, and Exxon Mobil, who were ‘cautioned’ over a recent spill of over a million gallons. Upping the stakes, the governor of Delta...

The $20 Billion Question

On day 58 of BP’s Deepwater Horizon disaster, the US government forced BP to allocate $20 billion to compensate victims affected. While US lawmakers decried the fact that only $71 million had been paid out last Tuesday, the contrast with the Niger Delta is striking. Victims in the small village of Ebebu have waited for 40...

Of Spills and Spin

That BP covered up its worst-case scenario of gushing 100,000 barrels of oil a day into the Gulf of Mexico simply confirms what many people living in Nigeria’s oil region have long protested about. In the Niger Delta, companies like Shell routinely under-report spill figures and volumes to limit their liabilities in terms of fines...

Will BP Oil Spill Make Shell ‘Come Clean’?

As the US government takes BP to task over the disasterous Gulf of Mexico spill, many Nigerians (including twitter users) are asking, ‘what about Shell?’. There is nothing clean about Shell’s operations in the Niger Delta, where daily oil spills are  frequently ignored for months and where ‘clean up’ methods include dumping oil-drenched soil into pits before...

Nigeria Spills Worse Than Deepwater Horizon, The Observer

An article by John Vidal in The Observer this week finds that the enormity of oil pollution in Nigeria ‘dwarfs’ BP’s Deepwater Horizon blow-out. Nigeria’s agony dwarfs the Gulf oil spill. The US and Europe ignore it The Deepwater Horizon disaster caused headlines around the world, yet the people who live in the Niger delta...

Chevron AGM Bars Nigeria Activists As Complicity Case Nears Court

In a blunt display of corporate censorship, Chevron officials denied respected human rights activist and Niger Delta women’s leader Emem Okon and a global delegation including Justice In Nigeria Now from its annual Shareholder Meeting in Houston yesterday (picture credit: Rainforest Action Network’s Change Chevron campaign).  The company, which is facing multiple lawsuits regarding its...

BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill – A Drop in the Bucket?

As BP’s Deepwater Horizon continues to exceed the company’s efforts to control it, the arrogance and irresponsibility of the oil major’s chief executive, Tony Hayward and his team has never been as clear. The consequences of BP’s mismanagement of the rig loom large, with estimated legal costs currently pegged at $60bn, and rising. Since the quantity of oil...

NEW REPORT: A Lake of Oil – Congo’s Controversial Contracts

Cross posted from the PLATFORM blog, here is a new report exposing how British oil companies are making huge profits from oil in the Congo. PLATFORM reveals Congo oil contracts that threaten resource wars and $10 billion rip-off Tullow & British Embassy push disputed deal that could cut Congo’s revenues by $10 billion Confidential oil...

Delta Activists Assaulted and Illegally Detained by Nigerian Police

Frontline human rights defenders in the Niger Delta suffered a brutal police attack on Monday 5th April, it emerged today in an Amnesty International statement. Activists from the Ogoni Solidarity Forum and Social Action were beaten, illegally detained without charge and denied access to lawyers and medical treatment. The text below is cross-posted from the Amnesty...

The Real Story Behind ‘Blood and Oil’

Viewers of the BBC2 action drama on the Niger Delta, ‘Blood and Oil’  may be shocked to discover that this murky thriller of hostages, soldiers, oil and conflict, has its roots in real events in the Delta. In particular, one of the darker chapters of former President Obasanjo’s repressive rule that went largely unreported… In...

‘Blood And Oil’: BBC Drama on the Niger Delta Crisis

The Niger Delta crisis is coming to an audience of millions as BBC 2 screen the long anticipated and award-winning drama, ‘Blood and Oil’ on prime time television. Guy Hibbert’s tense thriller (starring Naomi Harris (28 Days Later), Johdi May (Defiance) Patterson Joseph and David Oyelowo) follows two women as they investigate the  circumstances that...