FAMILY members of three Nigerian Ogoni minority activists executed in 1995 say they have been excluded from a $A19.5 million settlement reached with Royal Dutch Shell.

Europe’s largest oil producer on June 8 settled the suit filed in New York by Nigerian victims of attacks and relatives of activists killed from 1990 to 1995, including the writer Ken Saro-Wiwa.

The plaintiffs said Shell’s Nigerian unit helped the country’s military rulers at the time in the abuse and murder of the company’s Ogoni opponents.

The families of Nordu Eawo, Paul Levula and Baribo Bera, who were hanged along with Saro-Wiwa and five others in 1995, said they have been left out of the compensation Shell agreed to pay.

In a statement in Nigeria’s oil industry hub of Port Harcourt on Tuesday, they cited Ken Wiwa, Saro-Wiwa’s son, as saying only 10 families, including those of six executed activists, will benefit from the payment.

“We have all been in the struggle together, they did not inform us when they went to court, but the essence of going to court was because our people died unjustly,” said Blessing Eawo, widow of one of the hanged activists.

“Shell’s ambition to return to Ogoni would not be achieved if these three families are neglected.”

The non-violent campaigns against pollution and environmental damage by the Saro Wiwa-led Movement for the Survival of Ogoni People forced Shell to abandon operations in the Ogoni district of the Niger River delta in 1993.

Since then armed groups have emerged in the delta that sabotage oil installations, hijack vessels and kidnap oil workers for ransom.

Violence in the southern delta region, which accounts for nearly all of Nigeria’s oil and gas, has cut crude exports by more than 20 per cent since 2006.