A REPORT OF THE NIGER DELTA WOMEN FOR JUSTICE (NDWJ) ON THE DELTA WOMEN SEIGE ON THE AMERICAN OIL COMPANY, CHEVRON-TEXACO IN DELTA STATE OF NIGERIA
This report focuses on the gender dimension of the Niger Delta struggle for the control of their resources.The Delta women are primarily peasants, fishers and farmers. They sustain themselves and families from their own labour with produce from their farms and fishing ponds.. They have been the breadwinners of their respective families even as most men in the Delta confess.
The exploitative activities of the Nigerian State and the oil multinational companies have impacted more on the women than on any other group.They suffer from cash crop exploitation, loss of viable farmland and water systems. The repressive and oppressive activities of the oil companies and the Nigerian State also impact on women first and foremost. During military occupation of communities the women suffer psychologically, emotionally and physically. They suffer as their sons get arrested and killed, they also feel it most when their brothers, husbands and lovers are tortured, maimed and killed..
Thee military and armed police have brutalized and sacked whole communities, assaulting and beating indiscriminately. The objective is to humiliate, intimidate and eliminate those who resist oil exploitation activities. The Ijaw women had on 11th January 1999 taken to the streets of Port Harcourt, Rivers State, to protest against the activities of the Nigerian State and oil companies. Ugborodo, to Gbaramatu, to Ekpan and is it getting to Ilaje? As this report will reveal, the women will not be deterred by soldiers and guns or any form of intimidation. To them it is enough of oil politics.