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Biography of Nnimmo BASSEY

Nigeria > Social : Nnimmo BASSEY

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Born on 11/06/1958 (format : day/month/year)

Biography :

Nnimmo Bassey born June 11, 1958 is a Nigerian, Environmentalist, Executive Director of Environmental Rights Action in  and Chair of Friends of the Earth International which  has turned him into one of Africa's leading advocates and campaigners for the environment and human rights.

Indefatigably, Bassey has stood up against the practices of multinational corporations in his country and the environmental devastation they leave behind destroying the lives and ignoring the rights of the local population.

He received the 2010 Right Livelihood Award for opposing "the practices of multinational corporations in his country and the environmental devastation they leave behind" and "for his inspired work to strengthen the environmental movement in Nigeria and globally." In 2012 he was awarded the Rafto Prize which is a human rights award .

"For revealing the full ecological and human horrors of oil production and for his inspired work to strengthen the environmental movement in Nigeria and globally," Nnimmo Bassey, executive director of Environmental Rights Action and chair of Friends of the Earth International, has just been co-awarded the 2010 Right Livelihood Award, also know as the Alternative Nobel Prize.

In lauding his achievements, the Right Livelihood Award Foundation says,

Nnimmo Bassey was born on 11 June 1958. He qualified as an architect and practiced in the public sector for ten years. He became active on human rights issues in the 1980s as a member of the Board of Directors of Nigeria’s Civil Liberties Organisation. In 1993, he co-founded Environmental Rights Action (ERA), a Nigerian advocacy NGO, to deal with environmental human rights issues in the country.

Environmental Rights Action is also known as Friends of the Earth Nigeria and is the national chapter of Friends of the Earth International (FOEI), the world’s largest grassroots environmental network. In 2008, Bassey was elected Chair of Friends of the Earth International. The organisation, in coordination with its national chapters and under Bassey’s leadership, currently (September 2010) has six major programme areas: climate justice and energy; food sovereignty; economic justice; forests and biodiversity; resisting mining, oil and gas; and water.

Bassey and Environmental Rights Action’s major campaigning focus is oil, and the enormous damage being caused to Nigerian communities and other countries in the region (Angola, Cameroon, Chad, Republic of the Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, and Sudan), where oil is produced. He also works on supporting a broad movement across sub-tropical African countries where new finds of oil are being made.

Environmental Rights Action has led lawsuits against oil companies on behalf of many communities in Nigeria for liability for damage to their people and environment. Since 1996, Bassey and Environmental Rights Action have led Oilwatch Africa and since 2006 have led also the global South
network, Oilwatch International, through which they seek to mobilize communities in Nigeria, Chad, Cameroon, Congo (Brazzaville), Ghana, and Uganda as well as South America and South East Asia to
resist destructive oil and gas extraction activities. In addition to its work on oil spills, Environmental Rights Action has campaigned against gas flaring, winning a landmark ruling by a Nigerian High Court in 2005 that gas flaring is unconstitutional, damages people and the environment, and must stop.

Last update : 12/29/2015

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