News and Ideas (16)
Our Vision: a prosperous, equitable, sustainable and Democratic Ogoniland.
- We believe that externally designed explanations and solutions cannot be the answer to decades-long conflict in Ogoniland.
- Our model of grantmaking is participatory based. one that is grounded in the belief that if affected communities participate in decision-making, grants will be allocated to those most able to create long-lasting change.
- We believe that funding is crisis in most effective when it is quiet and supportive rather than headline-grabbing, branded or invasive.
Written by Bariton Cletus Lezabbey, Communications and Research Intern, Kiisi Trust Fund-TrustAfrica
It’s been over sixty years since oil was first discovered in Nigeria, approximately 25 years since oil operations were disrupted and halted in Ogoniland due to public unrest, and 24 years since human-rights activist Ken Saro-Wiwa and some of his Ogoni kinsmen were arrested, tried by a military tribunal and hanged by the Abacha regime on highly disputed allegations of complicity in the murder of four Ogoni chiefs. The oilfields and installations have since largely remained dormant, though major oil pipelines still cut cross Ogoniland and the environmental damage done to the land remains an issue of contention today. In a 15-year period from 1976 to 1991 there were reportedly 2,976 oil spills of about 2.1 million barrels of oil in Ogoniland, accounting for about 40% of the total oil spills of the Royal Dutch/Shell Company worldwide.
Ogoniland is made of up 6 kingdoms (Babbe, Gokana, Ken-Khana, NyoKhana, Eleme and Tai) and covers close to 1,000 square kilometers in Rivers state, Nigeria. Approximately 1 million people currently live in Ogoniland with close to 220 communities that extends across Khana, Gokana, Eleme and Tai local government areas.
TrustAfrica is an Africa-wide grantmaking foundation that is dedicated to fostering democratic governance and equitable development and works principally through collaboration and partnership with like-minded institutions and donors. It is incorporated in the United States as a 501(c)(3) taxexempt organization and has a location agreement with the government of Senegal. It has program presence in several African countries, maintains partnerships with several of Africa’s leading institutions, and has built a formidable reputation as a strategic grantmaker and an effective convener.