Royal Dutch/Shell Case Essay

1360 words - 5 pages

ROYAL DUTCH/SHELL CASE1.Does Shell bear some responsibility for the problems in the Ogoni region of Nigeria?I believe Shell bears much responsibility for the problems in the Ogoni region. One reason is the fact that Shell has received nearly $30 billion worth of oil from the Ogoni land but has not helped the Ogoni people by providing them with jobs or money to develop their lands. If Shell had provided money to the Ogoni people they could have built schools and provided health care that would help the them get their feet on the ground and potentially give them some power.Another reason Shell is responsible is because they destroyed much of the land in this region. This occurred through numerous oil spills that contaminated the soil and groundwater in the region. Even a spokesman at Shell admitted to them being at fault for this.A third reason Shell is responsible for the problems in this area is because they were the causing the conflict between the Ogoni people and the government. The Ogoni people were fed up with Shell destroying their land that, they believe, the government was responsible for stopping. Because of this the Ogoni people protested against the government plus Shell.A fourth reason Shell is responsible for the problems is because Shell would complain to the government about the Ogoni peoples protests and how it was halting their operations. Because of this the government would shoot at the crowds of protestors. These events caused hundreds of protestors to die.In conclusion, it is fair to say that Shell was very much responsible for all of the problems caused in the Ogoni region. This includes, to an extent, the execution of Saro-Wiwa and his associates. This is because Shell only used discreet diplomacy to influence the Nigerian government to stop the execution. This was obviously not enough of an effort on their part.2.What steps might Shell have taken to nip some of the protests against it in the bud, or even preempt them?There are many ways that Shell could have stopped or minimized the protests against them. One way would have been to provide money to the Ogoni people for use of their land. This would have given the Ogoni people a reason to accept some oil spills and contamination problems because they were receiving something in return.Another way that Shell could have minimized the protesting is by providing the Ogoni people with jobs. As with money for the community, it would have given the Ogoni people a reason to accept the problems Shell was causing on their land.A third reason Shell could have minimized the protesting was by trying to have talks with the Ogoni people and try to come to a peaceful resolve instead of having the government resort to violence.A fourth way Shell could have stopped the protesting was by not continuing their operations within the Ogoni territory. This would have been a very easy, but costly, way to prevent the protests.One last way to prevent or minimize the protests would have been to talk...

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