Royal Dutch Shell Nigerian Unit has agreed to pay NGN45.7 billion (£80.4m/$111.6m) to communities in southern Nigeria over crude oil spills in 1970.
In 2010, a federal court ordered Shell to pay NGN17 billion to the community. The oil major unsuccessfully challenged the decision on multiple occasions, including most recently at the Supreme Court in November. In March 2020, a judge in a related court case said that, with interest accrued, Shell’s debt stood at nearly NGN183 billion by January 2019 – a valuation the company vehemently contested.
Although the Anglo-Dutch energy giants still maintain that the spills were caused by third parties during Nigeria’s 1967-70 civil war when much damage was done to oil pipelines and infrastructure, they have agreed to the compensation award.