Home | 16th November 1995 | Issue 49



11.30am Port Harcourt Prison, south-east Nigeria. Ken Saro-Wiwa, Dr. Barinen Klobel, John Kpuinen, Baribor Bera, Saturday Dobee, Felix Nuate, Nordu Eawoh, Paul Levurah and Daniel Gbokoo are executed.

"I repeat that we all stand before history. I and my colleagues are not the only ones on trial. Shell's day will surely come for there is no doubt in my mind that the ecological war that the Company has waged in the delta will be called to question and the crimes of that war be duly punished." - Ken Saro-Wiwa at his trial.

Last Friday in a two fingers gesture to the world, the Nigerian military regime put to death nine people who paid the ultimate price tor campaigning for the most basic of human rights: the right for clean air, land and water for the Ogoni people of the Nigeria delta.

It took five bungled attempts to hang Ken Saro Wiwa. His final words "What country is this? What are you doing to me?" should be shoved down the throats of the Commonwealth governments who only offered 'gentle persuasion' to the Nigerian dictatorship not to carry out the death penalty and Shell Oil, who expressed its "deep regret" but in the next breathe, indicated it would press ahead with fresh investments in Nigeria. This said the Nigerian government 'vindicates the executions.'

"The Ogoni land is one of the most polluted places on the planet with gas fires burning 24 hours a day, fountains of oil pouring into villagers fields, contaminated water, leaking pipelines, pools of sulphur and drainage problems. - The land is so devastated environmentally that fishermen and farmers cannot sustain their lives."

Hunt Sabs 170 
Footie Fans 116 
Road Protestors 88 
Peace Campaigners 48 
vironmentalists 46 
No Li
ve Exports* 38 
Tree Defenders 14 
vellers# 11 
vers 10 
egal Gatherers 3 
Druids 1 
1200+ animal rights activists nicked this year 
and 125 CJA evictions monitored by FFT

In 1989 in despair at the continuing destruction of their land Ken Saro-Wiwa, well-known author and playwright, established the Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People (MOSOP). demanding autonomy for their region and a fair share of oil wealth. Shell are the biggest oil firm in the country currently producing 900,000 barrels a day in Nigeria, half the country's output - where 80 per cent of the governments revenue comes from oil it is Shell that helps to prop up the military regime.

In January 1993, 300,000 Ogoni staged a peaceful protest to coincide with the start of the world year of indigenous people. As the protests escalated Shell had to pull out of Ogoni land. A leaked memo stated that operations were still impossible "unless ruthless military operations are undertaken for smooth economic activities to commence." Later that year military force was used in a series of brutal attacks which left 750 Ogoni dead and 30,000 homeless. In May '94 Saro-Wiwa was imprisoned by the military police on fabricated charges of murder - he spent 63 of these days in chains. Two weeks later all nine were sentenced to death.

"Shell had ample opportunity to demonstrate concern over the 17 months of my fathers incarceration and trial. They chose to maintain their cosy relationship with the military dictatorship to secure oil profits rather than condemn the brutal and unjust arrest and later sentencing on non-violent environmental campaigners."

Indeed minutes released between the Nigerian High Commissioner and four senior oil executives at the Shell Centre in London showed no attempt to intervene on the activists behalf. The sole topic was how to handle the bad publicity. When Ken Saro-Wiwa was incited for murder, Shell said the verdict was not its concern...

The deaths have outraged the whole world. People are being urged to boycott Shell but "Shells Nigeria actions are indicative of the nature of multinational companies. Through the exploitation of oil, the Ogoni's chief 'livelihood, their land, is being poisoned. Soon they will have no choice but to become players in the economic system from which Shell derives it dominance.

Shell's gross income for 1990 was 132 billion - more than Tanzania, Ethiopia, Napal, Bangladesh, Zaire, Uganda, Nigeria, Kenya and Pakistan combined! 500 million people, 10% of the worlds population, live in these countries.


The whole issue brings into question the way our world is run and controlled by huge multinational companies unaccountable and uncaring, continually over-riding the wishes of people and the planet in their ruthless quest for profits. Boycott Shell - but then what? Oil companies the world over are devastating the environment and displacing people. It must go further than a simple boycott. It must be about

challenging the way the world is being destroyed for greed by a few. So where to do we begin? Get yourself informed, get yourself active. Fight back - as well as working towards sustainable lifestyles.

"The power wielded by these organisations is greater than that of many, if not all governments and makes a mockery of certain countries claims to democracy... multinationals are beholden neither to local communities nor to national electorates, they are the chief obstacle to the resolution of our environmental and social problems. 70% of all world trade is now controlled by just 500 corporations."

* On the Friday spontaneous actions at Newbury, Oxford, Cambridge and Brighton took place at Shell garages, along with a demonstration of 150 writers outside the Nigerian embassy. People were nicked outside the embassy after locking on to the railings. Giving the names of the nine Ogoni killed they were charged for trespassing on diplomatic territory and kept in the cells for 26 hours for their troubles.

* On Wednesday people picketed the "Management Summit 95" in London. Top-notch executives from a whole host of multi-murdering corporations came to hear speakers (on a mere £5,000 for a 40 minute chat) such as the president of McDonalds on "how to successfully manage the globalisation of corporations" or the head of Nestle, no doubt avoiding the issue of their companies relish in telling mothers from the third world that powdered milk is better than breast. Or what about the MD of Minolta Europe, who sees every future market dominated by four of five global corporations, each "infinitely caring" for billions of customers. "Global corporations must love people". Just like Shell love the Ogoni...

* Give Shell a bell 0171 934 2371/5522/4943

* Corporate Watch - how best to research rotten companies. Send SAE to Bow CW, 111 Magdalen Rd, Oxford, OX4 1RQ. Or Ethical Consumer, 16 Nicholas St. Manchester M1 (0161 237 1630).

* Whose Common Future? Reclaiming the Commons book by The Ecologist (Earthscan Publications). Essential if you want to understand the worlds accelerating environmental crisis brought about by 'nation building', 'economic growth' and 'development'. "What communities need is not outside 'management', but control over their own resources and the scope to run their own affairs.

*  Earth First! offer no compromise in defence of Mother Earth. They publish an excellent monthly newsletter. £4 (more if you can afford it) for 12 copies to EF! AU subscriptions, c/o Dead Trees EF! Box 25, 82Colston St. Bristol BS1 5BB. 01935825074 

h NOVEMBER 0171 354 5100

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Yet again the race card is being played by the Conservatives. The Asylum and Immigration Bill is just part of the package to ensure electoral success. The Bill (presently in its early stages) will be accompanied by an aptly named 'white list' - countries considered by the Home Office to be safe and which asylum seekers from that country will be automatically deported back. It is believed to include Sri Lanka, Algeria, Bulgaria, Turkey, Poland and Nigeria (though the later would now almost be impossible to include due to last weeks executions) Since the Nigerian military annulled the presidential elections in June 93 out of 9,000 Nigerians who have applied to Britain for asylum, only 4 nave been granted refuge status and 15 exceptional leave to remain.

Many of these so called 'safe' countries have severe human rights problems or are in civil war. Many people have already been deported back into the arms of dictatorships to face imprisonment or even death.

Despite an arms embargo by the British and US Government against Nigeria - sales continue. The recent sale of 80 British tanks are classed as non lethal - are they to be used for stockcar racing!

DSS workers, already being used by the government to implement the hated JobSeekers Allowance are, along with teachers, NHS staff and council workers to be held responsible for checking the immigration status of the public and to grass on any suspect illegal immigrants. Obviously black and Asian people will be targeted for harassment and could be refused services until the immigration checks are complete. If a racist is working in the public sector they will have the power to deny benefits, housing, medical assistance, teaching etc.

In October Peter Lilley, the Social Security Secretary, announced the abolition of benefits for Asylum seekers. Using the 'if we can't kick 'em out, then let's starve them out' approach the treasury will save an estimated £150-200 million. Most Asylum seekers find it virtually impossible to find jobs due to prejudice and their uncertain immigration status, combined with the fact that for the first six months asylum seekers can't legally look for work. For the 30,000 + people affected it will cut off their only lifeline.

The Bill also threatens to fine employers who have taken on illegal immigrants, giving rise to more discrimination. Already the unemployment rate for blacks and Asians is 18.8% - more than double that of whites. On average Afro-Caribbean's earn 98p less than whites and Pakistanis and Bangladeshis £2.52 less per hour!

Fact: There are more people leaving Britain each year than coming in. Can you blame them?

Refugee Council, 0171 820 3000. Campaign against the Asylum and Immigration Bill, c/o CAPA, St Hildas East Community Centre, 18 Club Row, London, E2 7EY.

From December 1st - the Complete SchNEWS in a handy paperback with a quarter of a million words and over 60 cartoons from our girl in a tree Kate Evan's makes it an ideal stocking fillah for all the family. Order now from bookshops at a giveaway price of £2.99 (mailout inc. extra £1 p+p - cheques payable to Justice? (SchNEWS).

e-SchNEWS e-mail:  Justice@internmedia.co.uk 
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The great traditions of British democracy were disgracefully flouted this week when a small group of nasty extremists protested outside the state opening of parliament - simply because the government is bringing a new racist law (the Asylum Bill) that will mean starvation and death for thousands of asylum seekers. 

Do these protesting yobs care nothing for great British traditions such as the state opening of parliament - and state racism? In a particularly disgraceful scene the miscreants threw paint over Brian Mawhinney, the chairman of the Conservative Party, forcing him to go into a TV discussion without his rather wet jacket. Just as well Labour Party deputy leader John Prescott was in the studio to join Mr Mawhinney in roundly condemning the "violence" of these cowardly paint-throwers. A government that refuses entry to families fleeing war and genocide is one thing, but an anti-racist demonstrator throwing coloured liquid at a fellow politician - that really does need condemning!


Two well-to-do landowners from Newbury petrol bombed a sleeping family in their coach at the Redden's Copse site, one of the camps set up to fight the proposed town's by-pass. Jerry, Amanda (who is pregnant) and Ben (6) were woken by flames coming from their vehicle late one night. Two 'people' wearing balaclavas were seen driving away from the site. Their registration number was taken and the Boys in Blue arrested some real criminals (for a change). 

The family were unharmed, but a spokesperson for the Third Battle of Newbury said of the attack. "It was only due to Jerry being awake that possible deaths were prevented." An action outside the court is guaranteed for when these inbred animals come to trial Get on the action phone tree for the Newbury campaign. Ring 01635 45544 / 45545.


workshops on road protesting, getting arrested, media tarting... speakers from Youth C. N. D. , Road Alert.'. . . debates, conscious cinema and loads of other shit 01273 685 913


Hugh Baker, a Manchester Earth First!er arrested for aggravated trespass during a solidarity action against the M77 in Glasgow, was imprisoned in Strangeways for 7 days for non-payment of fines. He should be back on the streets by the time this reaches you. Meanwhile Iggy, the Kent road protester who spent 22 days inside on remand for 2 cases of aggravated trespass and breaking bail conditions received 120 hours community service. Thanking people for the letters he received in prison, he told SchNEWS how important it is to write to those inside. 

Nine people were jailed in September for their involvement in Anti Nazi League demonstrations in Welling a couple of years back. Their sentences range from 16 months to 3 years drop 'em a line. 

At HMP Elmley, Church Road, East Church, Sheerness, Kent ME12 4AY:- Kari Anacoura (RN0599), Sanjiv Karia (RN0598), Russell Wild (RN0597), Paul Gay (RN0593), Gary Haynes (RN0591), Mark Gay (RN0594). 
HMP Lindholme, Bawtry Road, Hatfield Woodhouse, Doncaster, DN7 6EE: John McFeely (H Wing, RN0596). At HMP Aldington, Ashford, Kent, TN25 7BQ: Steven Kelly (RN0318) and Charles Ryder (RN 0595)


Monday 20th November at the Concorde, Madeira Drive, Brighton. DJs Nikki & Marcus + Hooflung & SchMoist + Conscious Cinema III & SchNEWS live with Advance Party, striking Liverpool Dockers, Shoreham Defence Campaign... phew.... get there early £1.50 B4 8pm, £2.50 B4 9pm and £3.50 for all you late stragglers. ... No SchNEWS last week - sorry but even workaholics need to chill out - and the Justice? allotment needed some tender loving care (don't we all?)

next Justice? meeting Wednesday 29th November at Unemployed Centre (Carlton hill, behind AmEx) 7.30 pm - film about the Ogoni & multinational companies.


Squatters are winning the battle against the new Interim Possession Orders (I.P.O.'s), which came in 10 weeks ago under the Criminal Justice Act. (CJA.) The I.P.O.'s were meant to make squatting harder by making it an imprisonable offence not to leave a building within 24 hours of being served one or to return within a year. There's only been 4 cases since I.P.O.'s came in and the squatters have only lost once (because they didn't bother contesting it). If you get served one, ring the Advisory Service for Squatters the same day on 0171 359 8814 

*** Greenline magazine are being sued by COPEX for warning people in the mag. that COPEX will sue you if you even mention them in print (hang on...) They need money and free legal advice - 01726 850500 

*** 45 workers at J.J. Fast Food Distribution (North London) have been sacked for joining the Transport and General Workers Union. Out of JJ.'s 75 employees, 45 joined the union to protest against low wages, (new workers got £130 a week 6 years ago compared to £180 now,) no sick pay, no holiday pay, it goes on. Support the sacked workers by sending donations or joining the daily protests - 0181 802 9804. 

*** Next Saturday (25th) there's another Groundswell Conference in Oxford. If you want to get active in the Campaign against the JobSeekers Allowance (JSA) ring 01865 723750

*** Meanwhile in Edinburgh claimants besieged High Riggs Unemployment Benefit Office then occupied the Grand Met Training Agency in protest against the ghastly JSA 0131 332 7574

*** Police officers need retraining to deal with demos, according to police bloke Commander Kendrick. He came to this conclusion after the shambles at the C J.B. demo last October, when riot police "seemed reluctant to withdraw" after being ordered to. He noted the "indifference to evidence gathering and successful prosecution" during the demo. Other new projects on the 'public order' front are a Public Order Intelligence System to gather info, on potential "trouble makers" and video cameras in riot shields so they can see what they're hitting ***

and Finally

Howard Youth - Michael has been shooting his mouth off about getting together an army of "youngsters" to combat crime. He wants them all to go out and join Neighbourhood Watch schemes. He doesn't realise they're already fighting crime - the criminal exploitation of the planet and its inhabitants by nuclear testing, car culture, open cast miners, multinationals, coppers enforcing barmy laws, the list goes on and on and zzzz...

The SchNEWS warns all readers not to attend any illegal gatherings or take part in any criminal activities. Always stay within the law. In fact please just sit in, watch tv and go on endless shopping sprees filling your home and lives with endless consumer crap. you will then feel content. Honest.

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Next Justice? meeting Wed Nov 29th @ Unemployed Centre (Carlton Hill, behind Am Ex) @ 7.30pm 
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