THE PRICE OF OIL

II. RECOMMENDATIONS

To the Nigerian Government

· Ensure that the ethnic groups resident in the oil producing areas are able to make their voices heard within Nigeria’s political system.

· Respect the rights of those in the oil producing communities to freedom of expression, association and assembly.

· Cease harassment of individuals and organizations that engage in research into oil industry compliance with environmental and other international and industry standards, and of activists seeking to hold oil operators and their contractors to these standards.

· Immediately and unconditionally release—or release on bail, charge with legally recognizable criminal offenses and try promptly before a regular court respecting international standards of due process—all individuals who are arbitrarily detained or imprisoned, and repeal decrees enabling detention without charge, including Decree No. 2 of 1984.

· Ensure that conditions of detention and imprisonment are in full compliance with international standards and obey all court orders for individuals held in custody to be released, produced before court, allowed visitors, given access to lawyers or doctors of their choice, removed to hospital when a prison or personal doctor recommends, or permitted reading material.

· Restore the independence of the judiciary by instituting appointment and removal procedures that do not involve the executive, giving the judiciary and courts adequate financial resources and autonomy, repealing decrees that oust the jurisdiction of the courts to consider executive acts, and obeying court orders.

· Allow members of the Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People (MOSOP) and of other organizations formed to challenge the operations of the oil industry in Nigeria to organize, meet and express their views, in accordance with international standards.

· Allow freedom of association and protection of the right to organize in accordance with Convention 87 of the International Labor Organization (ILO), and repeal decrees restricting these rights.

· Appoint an independent judicial inquiry into the actions of the security forces in the oil producing areas, make public the findings of the inquiry, and bring to trial those alleged to be responsible for human rights abuses.

· Appoint an independent judicial inquiry into the situation in Ogoni, including the role of Shell staff and contractors, as well as the security forces, in past human rights violations, and bring to trial those alleged to be responsible for human rights abuses.

· Set up a process for paying compensation to the relatives of the Ogoni activists executed on November 10, 1995, in accordance with the recommendations of the fact-finding mission of the U.N. secretary-general and the U.N. special rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Nigeria.

· Establish a committee composed of representatives of minority communities in the oil producing regions (including the Ogoni) for the purpose of examining the situation of these communities and providing redress for rights that have been violated, in accordance with the recommendations of the fact-finding mission of the U.N. secretary-general, the U.N. Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, and the U.N. special rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Nigeria.

· Undertake a review of laws affecting the relations of oil companies with the communities in which they operate, including the Land Use Act, the Petroleum Production and Distribution (Anti-Sabotage) Act, the Petroleum Decree and its subsidiary legislation, and other laws regulating payment of compensation for damage to livelihoods caused by oil operations, with a view to ensuring that those adversely affected are adequately compensated and protected by due process of law.

· Take the necessary legislative or other steps to require all oil companies operating in Nigeria.

· To publish all details relating to security arrangements for the protection of oil facilities and to ensure that all security staff employed by the company, including “supernumerary police” seconded from the Nigerian police force, are trained in human rights standards. Establish effective monitoring systems to ensure that these standards are followed and that criminal proceedings, if appropriate, are instituted where they are violated.

· To publish all documents relating to payments, gifts or contracts in relation to operations in the oil producing communities, including payments of compensation for oil spillages.

· To carry out a “human rights impact assessment,” identifying in particular problems related to security provision and conflict resolution, in addition to the already required “environmental impact assessment,” to develop plans to avoid the problems identified by such assessments, and to cancel the project if they cannot be avoided.

· To ensure the widest possible consultation of the people who will be affected by oil installations in their planning, and the greatest possible transparency in what is planned, so that oil operations have the consent of those who will suffer their negative consequences.

To the International Oil Companies Operating in Nigeria

· Develop guidelines on making or maintaining investments in or withdrawing from countries where there is a pattern of ongoing and systematic violation of human rights.

· Adopt explicit company policies in support of human rights; establish procedures to ensure that company activities do not result in human rights abuses; and publish annual reports to shareholders on the company’s activities in Nigeria, including information on the nature and extent of the company’s relations with the Nigerian government and measures taken to prevent human rights abuses by the Nigerian security forces in the oil producing areas.

· Jointly establish a committee of the Oil Producers Trade Section of the Lagos Chamber of Commerce which will monitor the human rights situation in the oil producing communities and make public and private protests to the Nigerian government when violations occur.

· In addition, as individual companies, appoint specific high ranking corporate officials responsible for monitoring in detail respect for human rights in the oil producing communities, publicly and privately call on the Nigerian government to restrain the use of armed force in oil producing areas, condemn human rights abuses by Nigerian security forces in the areas where the companies are operating, both in general and in specific cases, and make clear that activities undertaken in defense of oil company installations must be in accordance with international human rights principles.

· Include in written agreements with the Nigerian government relating to the regulation of the oil industry, especially any agreements relating specifically to security, provisions requiring state security forces operating in the area of company operations to conform to the human rights obligations the government has assumed under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights and other international human rights and humanitarian norms.

· Make public the provisions of security agreements with state entities and private organizations.

· Insist on screening security force members assigned for their protection, to ensure that no member of the military or police credibly implicated in past human rights abuses is engaged in protecting oil facilities. Companies should similarly screen security staff in their direct employment.

· Ensure that all security staff employed by or assigned to the company, including “supernumerary police” seconded from the Nigerian police force, are trained in human rights standards, providing the same training to all thosewithin the company authorized to have contact with the Nigerian authorities in connection with security threats to oil installations.

· Investigate all reported abuses, and make public and private protests to the authorities where excessive force is used, or where arbitrary detentions or other abuses take place. Publish details of reported incidents and the findings of internal investigations in their annual reports both in Nigeria and in the country of their head office.

· Publicly and privately call on the Nigerian authorities to institute disciplinary or criminal proceedings, as appropriate, against those responsible for abuses and to compensate the victims. Companies should monitor the status of such investigations and press for resolution of the cases, publicly condemning undue delay.

· Adopt internal guidelines surrounding the provision of security for their facilities, emphasizing the need to ensure respect for human rights, and establish effective monitoring systems to ensure that these guidelines are followed and that disciplinary proceedings are instituted where they are violated.

· When new facilities or investments are planned, carry out a “human rights impact assessment,” identifying in particular problems related to security provision and conflict resolution, in addition to the legally required “environmental impact assessment,” and develop plans to avoid the problems identified by such assessments. If they cannot be avoided, cancel the project.

· Ensure the widest possible consultation of the people who will be affected by oil installations in their planning, and the greatest possible transparency in what is planned, to ensure that oil operations have the consent of those who will suffer their negative consequences.

· In the case of Shell, publicly and privately call for and cooperate with an independent judicial inquiry into the situation in Ogoni, including the role of Shell staff and contractors, as well as the security forces, in past human rights violations.

· Publicly and privately call on the Nigerian government to establish an independent judicial inquiry into the actions of the security forces in the oil producing areas, including security specifically posted to oil installations, and to bring to trial those alleged to be responsible for violent abuses, and fully cooperate with such an inquiry and prosecutions.

· Publicly and privately call on the Nigerian government to allow freedom of assembly, association and expression, in particular with respect to grievances directed against the oil industry and in accordance with ILO Convention 87, and protest particular cases where these rights are not respected.

· Publicly and privately call on the Nigerian government to release unconditionally all those detained for exercising their rights to freedom of expression, assembly and association, especially in the oil producing communities, and to ensure fair and prompt trials before independent tribunals for all those charged with criminal offences.

· Make public all documents relating to payments, gifts or contracts relating to operations in the oil producing communities, including payments of compensation for oil spillages.

· Ensure that oil operations are carried out in accordance with all local environmental legislation in force in Nigeria, or with international standards if they are higher.

· Support the development of civil society in Nigeria by cooperating with nongovernmental organizations for human rights and environmental research and advocacy, and with universities and institutes engaged in academic research and policy development in these areas.

· Provide access to company facilities, officials, and documentation relevant to the protection and promotion of human rights, to personnel of domestic and international nongovernmental human rights and environmental organizations.

· Review programs of community assistance to ensure that development projects are planned by people who are professionally trained, that all members of communities can participate in devising development plans—and not only elites who already have good relations with the oil industry, and that projects genuinely address the needs of the people in those communities. Consider establishing independent, professionally administered bodies for the implementation of development projects.

· Develop and publicize policies to provide compensation to victims of human rights abuse committed by the Nigerian security forces or oil company private security either at oil company facilities or in connection with protests at oil company activity. Consider establishing independently and professionally administered funds for this purpose.

· Arrange independently funded verification, by national and international nongovernmental organizations and other appropriate bodies, of compliance by the company with international human rights and environmental standards.

To the International Community

· Maintain existing sanctions in place until an elected civilian government is installed in Nigeria, following a transition program that complies with international standards, set clear benchmarks that must be observed to satisfy those standards, and make clear that additional sanctions may be implemented (including the restoration of visa restrictions against members of the government and security forces and other measures), both multilaterally and bilaterally, if such a program is not successfully completed.

· Develop U.N. guidelines on the conduct of multinational companies, including oil companies, as regards human rights and other international standards, based on the draft U.N. Code of Conduct on Transnational Corporations, the ILO Tripartite Declaration of Principles Concerning Multinational Enterprises and Social Policy, and other appropriate standards.

· Re-establish within the U.N. system a commission on transnational corporations with a mandate to examine the human rights implications of activities by multinational companies.

· Support the efforts of Nigerian individuals and nongovernmental organizations who are monitoring and protesting violations of environmental and human rights standards in the oil producing communities, by channeling development assistance to them and by raising concerns surrounding these issues publicly and privately with the Nigerian government and the multinational oil companies directly.

· Take steps to coordinate action by different international actors to monitor and promote respect for human rights in Nigeria, including the U.N., Commonwealth, OAU, E.U., U.S., individual E.U. member states and other countries.


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