Chima Williams wins 2022 goldman environmental prize
A LEGAL luminary and environmentalist, Chima Williams, has won the 2022 Goldman Environmental Prize, an award that honours the achievements and leadership of grassroots environmental activists from around the world.
Williams, an Executive Director of Environmental Right Actions/Friends of the Earth Nigeria (ERA/FoEN), is the third Nigerian to receive the award after Ken Saro-Wiwa and Odigha Odigha who received the prize in 1995 and 2003 respectively.
The Prize recognises individuals for their sustained significant efforts in protecting the environment. The award seeks to inspire other ordinary people to take extraordinary actions to protect the natural world.
A statement issued by Kome Odhomor, Media/Communication Lead, Health of Mother Earth Foundation (HOMEF), on the occasion of the award on Williams, said the award is in recognition of his numerous engagements and campaigns for environmental justice.
Williams was part of the legal team that worked with the four fishermen from the three Nigerian communities that held Royal Dutch Shell company accountable for the oil spills and environmental damage on Oruma community, Bayelsa State; Goi community in Rivers State and Ikot Ada Udo community in Akwa Ibom state. He was also on the legal team that litigated the action over gas flaring in Iwherekan community in the case of Jonah Gbemre Vs. Shell in 2005.
While felicitating with Williams, Nnimmo Bassey, Director of HOMEF said, “This award could not have come at a better time for the struggle for environmental justice. The world is at the crossroads with multi crises including climate change, biodiversity loss and others.
“This award calls attention to the fact that changes can be propelled by grassroots actions. Williams has clearly illustrated this in his many years of dogged and selfless struggles.”