Chevron Cleared in Human Rights Lawsuit
Professor Allen Weiner is quoted in a radio news story on KQED's California Report about the verdict in the case Botowo v. Chevron corp:
Rachel Myrow: A federal jury has cleared Chevron of all liability in a lawsuit filed by Nigerian villagers. The verdict follows a five-week trial in San Francisco that was closely watched by multi-national corporations and human rights groups. Tara Siler has more.
Siler: Ten years ago, the Nigerian military killed two villagers and injured other who were occupying a Chevron oil platform in the Niger delta. During the trial, the two sides presented opposing scenarios of what took place on that platform. The Nigerians described a peaceful protest over environmental pollution that became violent after Chevron called in the Nigerian military. Chevron said the protestors instigated the violence. Chevron’s Don Campbell said the verdict vindicated his company.
Siler: And it will happen again next February. Royal Dutch Shell will stand trial in a case over the murder of a Nigerian environmental activist. Allen Weiner of Stanford Law School.
Weiner: There is a fundamental tension here between the interest of corporate predictability and the interest of promoting human rights and trying to encourage that there is not impunity for these atrocities in countries particularly where the local legal system, as in perhaps, Nigeria, may not be equipped to provide justice.