Letter: Saro-Wiwa: beware tribalism; boycott Shell

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From Mr John Boocock

Sir: The hanging of Ken Saro-Wiwa and eight other Ogoni people in Nigeria is not the end of the campaign for human rights in that country.

The plight of the Ogoni people has always been affected by the attitude of multinational companies who operate in Nigeria and who benefit from collusion with its military government. The actions of Shell in the Niger river delta immediately spring to mind and there are others (the British armaments industry, for one). We should all support the boycott of Shell. Shell is guilty with other foreign oil companies of turning the lush Niger delta into a wasteland.

This boycott should have been implemented in 1990, when the Ogoni people held a peaceful protest against the rape of their land by Shell. This protest prompted Shell to call on the Nigerian military for support. The Government will not act on this matter as it is at the beck and call of the US, Nigeria's biggest oil customer. It is time for people to take things into their own hands and to start the boycott of Shell.

Yours faithfully,

John Boocock