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federation of Ogoni women´s association Niger Delta

The Niger Delta is one of the world´s richest narural areas in resources.

Despite its ecological importance, the region has suffered from environmental and human rights abuses, including oil spills and gas combustions, disturbing the ecosystem.

OVER THE PAST YEARS, nigerian women have mobilized in a social movement promoted at grassroots level, to protest against transnational oil companies and have demanded them to be part of the solution.

For example, the natural gas resulting from the drilling to obtain oil, has been usually burned. This combustion has contributed to green house gasses emissions, much more than the emissions of the whole Sub-Saharan region.

In 2006, their protests lead to a statement from the Nigerian courts dictating the combustion of these gasses violated constitutional rights to life and dignitiy of citizens, and ordered the end of this practice.
On the April 25, 1997, the Federation of Ogoni Women's Associations (FOWA), an umbrella organization for all women's groups in Ogoni, the oil rich Niger Delta region of Nigeria, made a resolution. It stated "It is resolved that Shell cannot and must not be allowed in Ogoni...we say no to Shell as it remains Persona non grata in Ogoni."
This is a well-organized African women's movement; one that has played a key role in one of the largest non-violent struggles for environmental and social justice in African history.

The Ogoni are an indigenous ethnic group in the oil rich Niger Delta of Nigeria. The people depend on fishing, farming, and trading for sustenance. This close relationship with the land means Ogoni communities have placed strong emphasis on the care of the environment, believing it to be the life-giving source of the people and the dwelling place of their ancestors.

the constant acquisition of new territory for oil exploitation and the resulting pollution from the industry, has left the Ogoni women with no means to feed or support their families. This has given rise to tensions in the home and community, among with violence.

the association has united ogoni women of all generations. It has also been able to bring the thoughts of the women in the community together in one voice. 
BY ENSURING CULTURAL SURVIVAL WHILE FIGHTING FOR ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE, the federation of ogoni women´s association (fowa) HAS MADE ITSELF ONE OF THE MOST EFFECTIVE GRASSROOTS WOMEN'S MOVEMENTS IN AFRICA.

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Credits:

1. Terry Whalebone; Niger Delta; August 13, 2007; (CC BY 2.0). 2. eutrophication&hypoxia; Niger Delta; January 21, 2011; (CC BY 2.0). 3. Rhys Thom; yenagoafamiliarisation0017; August 30, 2003; (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0). 4. USAID Digital Development; WeMUNIZE , USAID Nigeria; June 25, 2019; (CC BY 2.0). 5. USAID Digital Development; WeMUNIZE , USAID Nigeria; June 25, 2019; (CC BY 2.0). 6. Jurgen; The Niger delta often shows fairytale-like scenery; September 17, 2006; (CC BY 2.0).