Shell Oil in Nigeria
1. What are some of the factors explaining why corruption and bribery are so high in Nigeria?
Nigeria is considered to be one of the most corrupt countries in the world. Many different forms of corruption are familiar to Nigeria including political corruption, bureaucratic corruption, electoral corruption, embezzlement, and bribery. Corruption has even been said to be a viable enterprise in Nigeria due to the involvement of citizens, government officials, and private corporations alike. Two main factors help explain why corruption and bribery are so high in Nigeria, these factors include Nigeria’s complete dependence on the petroleum industry and profit-focused companies taking advantage of a less developed, vulnerable country’s government and social systems.
Companies operating in Nigeria have a reputation for being a main driving force behind the corruption. They are constantly accused of allowing and actively participating in corrupt practices to ensure their strategic goals are accomplished. Besides bribing government officials and misrepresenting figures these companies decline to engage people who are trying to fix the system. Instead of participating in the problem, companies as large as Shell should be setting an example for ethical business practices in developing regions. They should be ensuring that their investments in the community are being funneled to the appropriate channels for improving things like infrastructure and the standard of living for Nigerians. The weak government is easily influenced by bribes and other kickbacks, and companies like Shell are quick to take advantage. Shell has been known to use bribery as a means to get secure new licenses and territories and circumvent customs laws. This type of activity is so common that it has become somewhat of a local culture. The losers in this scenario are the general public in Nigeria whose land is exploited and destroyed by oil pipelines and spills. These...
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