Ecuador´s Constitutional Court has rejected the protection appeal filed by Chevron in 2014.
Since 2014, the Union of People Affected by Texaco (UDAPT) expected a resolution by the Constitutional Court of Ecuador about the protection appeal filed by Chevron Corporation to avoid paying 9.5 billion dollars as part of a historical sentence received in 2011 for the damage caused to indigenous communities and settlers of Orellana and Sucumbíos due to the use of cheap and obsolete technology during the oil exploitation works carried out in the Ecuadorian Amazon between 1964 and 1990.
After four years of waiting and 25 years of struggle, this July 10, the Constitutional Court ruled to reject the protection appeal filed by Chevron. UDAPT lawyer Pablo Fajardo, and Elías Paguaje, indigenous leader, were interviewed by Real World Radio and talked about the significance of this judicial ruling.
There are no more appeals for the corporation to file to avoid complying with the 2011 ruling. They also won´t be able to “bargain” anymore with the Ecuadorian government, after trying to negotiate oil investments in exchange for not paying what they have to pay.
Ecuador has been the only country which has judicially dealt with and ruled against Chevron for its environmental pollution and impacts on the communities. The 2011 ruling was exemplary and it was used to file lawsuits against the oil transnational corporation in Brazil, Argentina and Canada, but the Courts in those countries alleged that it was not possible to “validate” the Ecuadorian ruling: decisions that were made after the governments were pressured or bribed, for instance with investment offers, to not go against the TNC.
“This ruling is an important step to access justice”, said Willian Lucitante, Executive Coordinator of the Union of People Affected by Texaco, an organization that gathers over 30,000 people affected and which has taken this case to all possible Courts. “After 25 years of struggle, we can finally close this chapter. We are taking solid steps for justice”, said the UDAPT leader.
It is worth remembering that UDAPT continues its judicial case in Canada. In order to appeal a ruling of an Ontario Court, which favored Chevron in May, UDAPT has launched a campaign to raise 350,000 Canadian dollars (230 thousand Euros) to pay, before August 16,the costs incurred by Chevron, according to the Court. This will allow UDAPT to file an appeal.
To make a donation, please visit The Crowd Versus website: https://www.thecrowdversus.org/cases/chevron-oil-spill-in-ecuador/