Cable: Shell infiltrates Nigerian ministries

LAGOS, Nigeria : A U.S. Embassy cable released by the WikiLeaks website alleges that Royal Dutch Shell PLC’s top manager in Nigeria claimed the oil company had sources inside of “all relevant ministries” involving its business.The cable dated Oct. 20, 2009, quotes Shell’s Ann Pickard. Pickard allegedly said that the Nigerian government “had forgotten that Shell had seconded people to all the relevant ministries and that Shell consequently had access to everything that was being done in those ministries.”Shell discovered the first oil play in the Niger Delta in 1956 and started pumping crude out of the swamps two years later. It has since been the dominant oil company in the former British protectorate — and has been demonized both by environmentalists and by community activists.Shell officials could not be immediately reached for comment – Yahoonews