Wednesday 1 May 2013
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'The Only Government We See' tells the story of the negotiation of General Memoranda of Understanding (GMOUs) between Chevron and communities in the Niger Delta around its facilities. The process began after violent conflict in the region in 2003 led to the withdrawal of the company and the destruction of property, including schools and hospitals the company had built for communities. The film describes the new approach to dialogue with communities that the company adopted on its return, based on full participation and joint partnership. It relates the role played by the head of the New Nigeria Foundation, a local NGO that came in to mediate the dialogue and help build the foundations for increased trust between those involved. It conveys how and why the communities decided to engage in the dialogue, what progress and challenges emerged along the way, and the outcomes that have been achieved. It reflects how this experience spawned a continuing process of periodically evaluating and renegotiating the GMOUs, again with the full participation of the communities themselves, to keep them relevant and vital.
This is the third in a series of four films produced by the Corporate Social Responsibility Initiative at Harvard Kennedy School on behalf of the mandate of the former Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Business and Human Rights, Professor John Ruggie.