A future with justice
Statement by MOSOP UK on the 11th anniversary of the judicial murder of the Ogoni 9:
Stoicism without self-pity has been an important survival philosophy for us. Sailing down the path of victimhood is not our forte, rather we remain seekers after justice. We are in this respect determined to ensure that the collective sacrifice which our hero-martyrs, Daniel Gbokoo, Dr. Barinen Kiobe, Nordu Eawo, Ken Saro-Wiwa, John Kpuinen,Saturday Dobee, Paul Levura, Felix Nuate, Baribor Bera, made with their lives will not be in vain. Our selfless leaders carried through a non-violent struggle for which they were murdered by the military dictator Abacha.
The environmental dangers confronting humanity today at the local and global levels, through the activities of multi-national corporations such as Shell, the lifestyle of rich countries, the exploitation of people and the destruction of their environment and lives, were issues in the Ogoni struggle, which Saro-Wiwa fearlessly articulated.
A terrible human and environmental tragedy has taken place and is still continuing, and it seems the capacity to address these, with regards to the Ogonis and the Niger Delta, is painfully lacking, because it entails the fundamental principle of justice. This is a concept which the corroupt political and military groupings and evil multi-nationals find too threatening to their interests, to adopt. Admittedly, in the current atmosphere of loud and busy party politiking, the concerns of minorities such as the Ogonis, in the oil producing areas, are drowned out because these directly affect their illicit wealth and undeserved incomes.
We know that merely remembering our murdered heroes is not enough. We have attempted to gather the pieces of our lives and struggle to reconstruct a future based on the positive principles our leaders were killed for. Doubts are already being expressed, about the sort of nation and democracy that are emerging from the trauma of bloody military dictatorships.
Many issues therefore remain outstanding and these have to be seen in the context of the need for revival and regeneration of the Ogoni society and these include:
- A decision-making process that depends on and reflects the wishes of the people,
- Realistic compensation to families of those who were killed,
- A programme of intensive environmental rehabilitation,
- Compensation for loss of livelihood due to oil exploration activities,
- Restoration of the wildlife and habitats,
- Independent local and international (verifiable) monitoring standards of operations for any environmentally sensitive activity such a oil exploration, and
- Implementation of the U.N. recommendations on the Ogoni crisis.
We Ogonis, believe that all the obstacles to a just resolution could be removed by the willingness on the part of the Nigerian government and its state arm and Shell, to recognise and implement our just demands. Ogonis have the right to expect stability, growth, sustainable existence in a healthy environment.
Please join us in remembering our heroes and continue to support our struggle for justice.
Long live our martyrs.
The struggle continues.
President: Gbenewa Phido
General Secretary: Harrison Neenwi
PRESS RELEASE: NOVEMBER 10, 2006
10th November 2006 marks 11 years of the judicial murder of the Ogoni 9 –
In commemoration of this sad and brutal experience, MOSOP UK invites you to a remembrance church service:
Date: Sunday 12th November 2006
Time: 10.00 a.m.
Venue: SAINT PANCRAS CHURCH, Euston Road, London NW1
(Junction of Upper Woburn Place and Euston Road.
Nearest station - almost opposite Euston station, Kings Cross & various buses)
Other activities planned to commemorate the event include programmes by PLATFORM – a coalition of organisations and individuals organising activities to remember Saro Wiwa and supported by the Ken Saro-Wiwa foundation.
Date & venue: Friday 10th November 2006 - Arts Council ( Morning: 11.am - Press conference and unveiling of the Living Memorial commission by Sokari Douglas Camp)
The Guardian, Newsroom Visitor Centre (Evening: 7.30 – 10pm – An evening of poetry, film and music dedicated to Ken Saro-Wiwa with Kadija George, and DJ Eric Soul. Refreshments provided).
Please check their web site for detailed information.
Please remember Ken Saro Wiwa did not seek justice for only the Ogonis but for all Niger Delta communities and the downtrodden public. Everyone is welcome to show their solidarity to our cause. Thank you for your continued support.
The struggle continues.
Mrs Gbenewa Phido (President – MOSOP UK - 07932 695 305)
Mr Harrison Neenwi (Secretary – 07859 001 966)