Crisis in Nigeria’s Niger Delta Shows No Signs of Abating

Crisis in Nigeria’s Niger Delta Shows No Signs of Abating

WARRI, Nigeria -- It takes two hours by boat to get to Deibu, an isolated outpost of about 17,000 people in Nigeria's Niger Delta. The town is cut off from civilization by the River Nun and a thick mangrove forest, and first-time visitors who make the journey are struck by the poverty they find -- a stretch of rickety mud houses, with canoes lying by the riverside.

Deibu is trapped in another age. Children and adults bath naked in the Nun. There is no electricity service or plumbing. The village's only sign of modernity is a battered health center, a primary school built by the villagers, and a six-classroom secondary school donated by the Shell oil company.

Even though Deibu is rich in natural resources, revenue from the delta's oil exploration has not reached the town's residents, and environmental damage resulting from oil drilling have hurt fishing and farming, residents say.

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