Oilwatch Group Celebrate Saro Wiwa 27 Years After His Execution At COP27
Ken Saro Wiwa, a late Nigerian environmental campaigner, was honored by the Oilwatch group on Friday during COP27 in Egypt, 27 years after his execution, bringing his memory to life once more.
The Health of Mother Earth Foundation (HOMEF), based in Nigeria, Earthlife Johannesburg, in Johannesburg, CAPPA, in Africa, the Kabetkache Women Development Center, in Nigeria, and the Centre for Environmental Justice, in Togo are all members of the Oilwatch group.
As a result of his environmental activism against the oil exploitation in the Ogoni region of the Niger Delta, Mr. Saro Wiwa was executed on November 10, 1995, along with eight other people, by the then military administration.
The late activist’s spirit still lives on, according to Nnimmo Bassey, director of HOMEF and an environmental activist, and the fight they led continues to motivate people to oppose environmental crimes committed by extractive firms in Nigeria and around the world.
“Today, we honor Ken Saro-Wiwa and the eight Ogoni leaders who were wrongly executed on November 10, 1995 by the Nigerian government.
“We also remember the numerous environmental and human rights activists who were killed by or on behalf of mining and fossil fuel companies throughout the world.
“The globe is warming, blood has flown, and our fields have been contaminated. Justice is what we demand for our heroes.
He said that the rehabilitation of all polluted lands and payment for ecocide were also necessary. “A halt to dependence on fossil fuels — the true climate action,” he stated.
According to Makoma Lakelakala of Earthlife, “the need to move away from dirty energy has never been more essential as the globe tackles the growing climate concerns at the present COP27.
“The UNFCCC requires a phrase in the negotiated climate agreement that provides protection of those supporting the rights of environment, planet, and people in honor of climate defenders whose lives were ruthlessly cut short.”
The event, according to Celestine Akpobari, Team Leader at the Peoples Advancement Center in Nigeria, was intended to serve as a reminder to the outside world that the situation in Ogoni has gotten significantly worse since the time of Ken Saro Wiwa.
“The world is on a speed-lane to climatic hell, it has been claimed during this climate change conference, but I want to add that Ogoni people have been there all these years,” said Mr. Akpobari.
He said the Ogoniland group opposed the new race for African oil and gas and that the planned resume of oil operations there should be stopped because it could incite strife.
“As we honor Ken Saro Wiwa and other martyrs today, we resolve to keep on with their words,” said Emem Okon, director of the Kabetkache Women Development and Resource Center in Nigeria.
She emphasized the necessity of cleaning up all polluted places and holding polluters accountable for their ecological crimes in local communities all around the world.