18 September 2008
Media Review Network (MRN) is extremely concerned about the safety of South African oil-worker, Dan Laarman, another unidentified South African, as well as the British, Ukrainian and Nigerian citizens who were kidnapped almost two weeks ago by the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND). It is hoped that the South African Consulate in Nigeria is doing everything in their power to free these men, so that they may be returned safely to their families.
MRN insists that the South African government, together with the African Union (AU), demand greater transparency and accountability from transnational oil companies and African government about the income generated by the oil industry. Further, the AU must force oil companies operating in Africa to be more equitable and just in their dealings with indigenous communities. Unless these basic requirements are fulfilled, more foreign workers are likely to be held hostage again.
We pray that the families of these oil-workers are endowed with patience, strength and courage during this difficult time, and that their loved ones will be returned to them safely.
Media Review Network
(Media Review Network is an advocacy group based in Tshwane (Pretoria), South Africa)