Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Shell settles lawsuit over death of Ken Saro-Wiwa










Dear CCR supporter,

"Solidarity forever!" 

This was among the shouts last night amidst song and dance as Wiwa plaintiffs and the CCR team celebrated the victory of settling Wiwa v. Shell for $15.5 million  after 13 long years of struggle to hold Shell accountable for its complicity in the torture, killing, and other abuses of Ogoni leader Ken Saro-Wiwa and other non-violent Nigerian activists in the Ogoni region of the Niger Delta.

In a statement released yesterday, the plaintiffs said:  "Although our journey to this victory has been drawn out and emotionally draining, we are extremely satisfied with the result. For fourteen years and more we have suffered our loss privately and publicly….It has been a lonely, agonizing and traumatic period for many of us but we [held] out for the day when we might finally be given the opportunity to exorcise our grief. It is said that justice delayed is justice denied but today our private agonies and our long struggle for justice have finally been vindicated….." To read the full statement, click here. Plaintiff Ken Saro-Wiwa Jr. reflected on the settlement in today's Guardian.

The plaintiffs' attorneys also released a statement that read, in part: "Every corporation, like every individual, should be held to the same universal human rights standards the world over….We hope that this settlement provides another building block in the efforts to forge a legal system that holds violators accountable wherever they may be and prevents future violations." To read the full statement, click here.

Is the struggle for justice in the Niger Delta over? Absolutely not. The plaintiffs have been very clear that they were only settling their own individual claims against the oil giant. Much unfinished business remains between the Ogoni people and Shell, and the struggle for corporate accountability continues on in Nigeria and the world over.

On behalf of the CCR team, we echo the thanks of the plaintiffs "for keeping us company and for your support for all these years, and the years to come." Thank you for standing with us in the continued struggle for justice.

Yours truly,

Vincent Warren
Executive Director

P.S. For more information on Wiwa v. Shell, visit www.wiwavshell.org.



Donations can be sent to the Baltimore Nonviolence Center, 325 E. 25th St., Baltimore, MD 21218.  Ph: 410-366-1637; Email: mobuszewski [at] verizon.net


"The master class has always declared the wars; the subject class has always fought the battles. The master class has had all to gain and nothing to lose, while the subject class has had nothing to gain and everything to lose--especially their lives." Eugene Victor Debs


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