Shell denies reports workers ‘held’ by Nigerian protestors

Oil firm Shell has firmly denied any of its employees in Nigeria were “kidnapped or seized” by a group of protestors. Reports emerged yesterday afternoon alleging a handful of Shell’s […]

Register now!

By Vicky Ellis

Oil firm Shell has firmly denied any of its employees in Nigeria were “kidnapped or seized” by a group of protestors.

Reports emerged yesterday afternoon alleging a handful of Shell’s workers at the Nembe island in Nigeria were caught up in 1,000-strong protest.

It was alleged boats holding Shell workers had been seized while on the Niger Delta by local communities demanding electricity and drinking water.

The oil giant’s subsidiary in the West African state, Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) has 6,000 staff across the whole of Nigeria. It employs local people to watch the pipelines or routes of the pipelines which are buried underground.

A spokesperson said the firm was aware of protests over these “surveillance contracts” but rebuffed the hostage claims, telling ELN: “We’re clear no one was kidnapped or seized.” They added no production had been affected.

A spokesman for SPDC added: “Some youths from Nembe community who were protesting about local flowline surveillance contracts [on Monday] ended their action [on Wednesday] following engagement of the youths and the Nembe community leadership by SPDC.

“We continue to work towards maintaining the cordial relationship between SPDC and Nembe community.”