Equatorial Guinea: Human Rights Watch criticises use of oil profits by govt., says funds not being used to lift citizens out of poverty

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Article
9 July 2009

Oil Corruption in Equatorial Guinea

Author: Jad Mouawad, New York Times

… A new report [about Equatorial Guinea by]…Human Rights Watch, released Thursday in Spain, recaps much of what can go wrong when powerful oil interests encounter a corrupt and ruthless dictatorship…“Companies in the oil business have been anxious to improve the image of the country and so underplay how politically unstable the country has become,” the report said. These companies include Exxon Mobil, Hess, Marathon, Chevron, Devon, and Vanco Energy...“Without meaningful international pressure, the immense wealth of Equatorial Guinea will continue to be a private cash machine for a few instead of the means to improving the lives of many.” [said Arvind Ganesan, the director of the business and human rights program at Human Rights Watch]

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Article
9 July 2009

Well Oiled - Oil and Human Rights in Equatorial Guinea

Author: Human Rights Watch

Oil revenues have provided the Equatoguinean government with the money needed to do a much better job realizing their citizens’ economic and social rights. Government officials have [used]… public funds for personal gain at the expense of providing key social services to the country’s population, and squandering other potential revenues through mismanagement… A 2004 US Senate probe into Equatorial Guinea’s dealings with the US-based Riggs Bank (now part of PNC Bank) threw light upon how Equatorial Guinea has in the past managed its funds from the oil industry. The role of US oil companies in Equatorial Guinea also came under official investigation—an important development, as it signaled to them that even in Equatorial Guinea they will not escape scrutiny of their business dealings. [refers to Military Professional Resources (part of L- 3 Communications), Chevron, Devon, ExxonMobil, Hess, Marathon, Vanco Energy]

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