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Ogoni Will Reject UNEP Assessment Report

By Ogoni Activist Ben Ikari

Ogonis will reject any aspect of the United Nations Environmental Program (UNEP) report, which may conclude that the nationality is responsible for more than 90% of oil spills it’s assessed. This warning is coming before the planned report due for publication about December is erroneously celebrated.

And it’s a serious warning. Therefore the world should take note before UNEP’s coordinator, Mike Cowing conspires with $hell Oil and the Federal government of Nigeria (who are in joint-venture business and sponsoring this assessment) to dent Ogoni for whatever prize he may be given.

Obviously, who pays the piper dictates the pace. This is very much considering $hell historical fraudulent behavior and bids that corrupted people especially in Nigeria. It’s also true in a situation where the government which should have worked with experts, to bring effective and people-based result as the experience in America, is a partner in crime.

Meanwhile, my communication with Cowing will show a double-speaking. Implying he may have something to hide. Prior to this moment Ogoni had complained about the lack of due process on the part of UNEP-a complaint that was ignored.

According to an account by (AkanimoReport) titled: “Niger delta: Oil Spills Report Pits ERA Against UN, and dated August 12, “The forthcoming UN report will conclude that around 10 percent of the volume of oil spilled in the Niger Delta is attributable to equipment failures and negligence, and therefore the fault of the joint venture by Royal Dutch Shell and the Nigerian government.”

Furthermore, “The vast majority of the oil spilled into the Niger Delta was caused by the local population, through theft and sabotage linked to civil strife in the region,” the above report says.

And “A 2009 assessment by Shell concluded that 98 percent of the oil spilled in the Ogoniland region of the delta was caused by oil bunkering and deliberate attacks,” the report continued.

It’s this talking point that Cowing who claims to be independent is using (with science) for the most part to judge the Ogoni environment. And, he, like his sponsors is wrong. Although I wrote him an email on Jan. 6, asking to know the probability that both $hell and the Nigerian government (the financiers) could influence his decisions and actions. He refused to reply my mail.

When I raised the issues in Akanimo’s report in another mail to him on August 16, he first claim that, “It is not UNEP’s job to apportion responsibility for the numerous spills throughout Ogoniland. Rather, this is the responsibility of the regulators including NOSDRA, MoE and DPR.”

I argued that militancy and bunkering emerged in recent time, say about 2004. Whereas $hell had operated recklessly with impunity for almost 46 years. And that thousands of spills including the one at Ebubu Eleme of 1970, have occurred uncleaned in Ogoni. Also, that militancy and bunkering activities were as a result of corporate and government neglect, economic suicide forced on the people.

He’s asked if he’s distancing himself from Akanimo report, that of UNEP-Ogoni website, National Network News Vol. 7 No 23, June 16th-22nd 2010, and many others scattered online? he retracted somewhat.

On August 18, he said, “Clearly, illegal bunkering is a relatively new phenomenon, over the last ten years or so, and many historical spills are related to equipment failure.I am in no way distancing myself from what I have said, on record, but it is important to note where the figures come from – the Nigerian regulators (NOSDRA, MOE and DPR).” And also says, “What we see in the field does not contradict these official records.”

Ironically, he’s the same “expert” who claimed it isn’t UNEP’s duty to allocate responsibility to companies or communities for how much oil they spilled.

Finally, before $hell and the Nigerian government doctors UNEP under Cowing’s supervision to wrongfully blame Ogoni or Niger delta for most of the spills independent organizations (locally and internationally) have already found them responsible. I want the world to know that I’m (Ogoni) doubting Cowing’s honesty.

Going by his commentaries or press releases, which takes side with $hell and the government, Ogonis home and abroad will reject any portion of his (UNEP) report that force 90 or 98% of all spills which have occurred in more than 50 years on Ogoni. and its sister non-profit websites,,,,,, and are owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia feature.

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