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THE OGONI 9

Press Statement from the 1st Ken Saro Wiwa Memorial Seminar Organized in Cape Town by the Ogoni Solidarity Forum (OSF) on the 22nd and 23rd of November 2007 to mark the 12th anniversary of the killing of the Ogoni 9
 
On the 22nd and 23rd of November 2007, representatives of Social Movements, Community Based Organizations, Faith Based groups, Non Governmental Organizations, Scholars and Academics, Activists and Journalists from different parts of South Africa meet in Community House, Cape Town, to commemorate the 12th anniversary of the killing of Ken Saro Wiwa, who was a well known writer, environmentalist, minority rights crusader and eight other Ogoni activists, namely; Dr. Barinem Kiobel, John Kpuinee, Paul Levura, Daniel Gbokoo, Felix Nuateh, Saturday Doobee, Nordu Eewo and Baribor Beera, were callously killed by the hands of the Nigerian nation state on the 10th of November 1995.
 
The purpose of the two day meeting was to sensitize the South African public about the plight and struggle of the Niger Delta Communities in general and the Ogoni Ethnic Nationality in particular.
 
The meeting was attended by a total of 102 delegates including Prof. Dennis Vincent Brutus, ex-Robben Islander, and well known South African poet, Bobby Peek, renowned South African Environmentalist, Dr. Tam-George, Prof. Eugene Cairncross, Prof. Kevin Winter and Dr. Kolade Arogundade who presented different papers based on researches done on oil exploration and exploitation of the Niger Delta peoples and the Ogoni situation.
 
The two day seminar was motivated by activists from the Ogoni Ethnic Nationality, who came to South Africa since 2003 to solicit for support from their fellow Africans, to expose the cruel hands of imperialism on the African indigenous peoples.
 
That after the two day meeting, the participants came to the following understanding and resolutions:
 
That the Ogoni ethnic nationality and other groups of the Niger Delta, were grafted into a Nigerian nation state on account of colonial and imperial business interest.

That the Nigerian nation state had failed to cater for the needs of the Ogonis, the same way that colonial fabricated states had failed all Africa indigenous groups.

That the Ogoni Bill of Rights which is the only hope for the Ogoni people had not been attended to, seventeen years after its historic submission to the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

That the fate of the Ogoni women even in this modern age is no different from the pre-history Africa, which subjected women.

We also discovered that the killing of Ken Saro Wiwa and eight others is reminiscence of the death of other African freedom fighters like Steve Bantu Biko, Chris Hani and Patrice Lumumba.
 
Resolutions:
 
We the delegates call on the government of South Africa to through its relationship with the Nigerian government address the situation of the Ogoni people and other Niger Delta Communities.

We also call on the United Nations High Commission for Refugees to address the situation of the Ogoni people in various refugee camps across Africa.

We call on the Pan African Parliament (PAP) to summon the Nigerian nation state to respond to the demands of the Ogoni Bill of Rights.
 
For and on behalf of the delegates:
 
Dennis Vincent Brutus   CCS, University of KwaZulu-Natal
Bobby Peek                             Groundwork                            
Bobby Wilcox               APDUSA                                
Steven Van-wyk                        Southern Durban Coalition of Environmental Alliance
Maxwell Nwachukwu                Frontline Africa
Eleanor Hoedeunakes               Zillerain Heights
Dr. Heidi Grunebuam                 Women-In-Black
Athini Melane                            Right-to-Work
Nopisiwo Ngcolomba                Ilitha Lomso
Lunga Sigwili                             Activist
Thumlani Latya              LRC/DCYM
Angela  Nhira                            L.H.C.C
Shawn Hattingh                         International Labour Research Information Group
Judy Kennedy                           International Labour Research Information Group
Nondikho Bianjo                       Treatment Action Campaign
Marry Tal                                  Whole World Women Association
Norbert M Ndleleni                 Activists
Zandile Masamanzi                    Ilitha Lomso
Mbongeni Nyeli                         Community Net Forum
Caroline Ntaopane                    Vaal Environmental Justice Alliance
Nopasika Mboto                       Social Movement Indaba
Doarthy Idam                            Gbene Ogoni Women Association       
Barry Wugale               Ogoni Solidarity Forum

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