Appendix 1:
Bayelsa State Oil and Environmental Commission Terms of Reference


The exploration and production of oil in Bayelsa State and the wider Niger Delta has led to significant environmental and human damage. Despite decades of debate and campaigning by local and international communities, oil spills have caused untold human and environmental devastation in the region. Henry Dickson, Governor of Bayelsa State, has mandated the formation of a Commission to collate facts and propose the development of a framework that ensures accountability to avoid future oil spills, and the clean-up of existing spills.


The aim of the commission is to develop a set of informed recommendations that lead to the development of a new legal framework that ensures accountability and an action plan for implementation to ensure a healthy environment by ensuring appropriate clean-up and remediation of impacted sites, and that host communities receive sufficient compensation for the impacts of environmental pollution and degradation, and reap the benefits from the production of oil within their communities.

The Commission will achieve this by:

  1. Investigating the environmental and human damage caused by the operations of the multinational oil companies, specifically as a result of oil spills, in Bayelsa State.
  2. Analysing the existing legislation governing the operations of the multinational oil companies, undertake comparative analysis with legislation governing the operations of multinational oil companies in other territories, and assess the suitability of the existing Nigerian legislation for holding multinational oil companies to account for their activities.
  3. Inviting evidence from the international community through evidence sessions in different locations.
  4. Inviting evidence from the international community through hosting online evidence sessions where participants are able to submit oral evidence via video link or written evidence via writing to the Commission email account.


The Commission will be formed of two groups, one being the Investigative Group known as “The Commission” and an Expert Working Group. The commission will be chaired by the Archbishop of York.

The Chair will be responsible for:

  1. Chairing the launch meeting and evidence sessions in Bayelsa State (agendas and papers will be prepared by the Secretariat on the advice and agreement of the Chair)
  2. Agreeing with fellow Commissioners the final drafts of the two reports of the commission (the drafts of which will be prepared by the Expert Working Group with the support of the Secretariat)
  3. Engaging in communications work, where necessary, with the support of other Commissioners and the Secretariat

The Commission will be made up of senior individuals with relevant experience. The Expert Working Group will be made up of academics with relevant expertise. The Commissioners will receive reimbursement for pre- approved travel expenses and a per diem rate while the Commission is undertaking its enquiries.


The Commission is an independent body that will not be aligned to any Government or regulatory authority. It will therefore not have formal investigative powers or the ability to subpoena witnesses or compel anyone to engage with it or provide evidence. However, the Commission will consist of a range of senior and influential figures and experts in this area, which will provide it with significant authority.


The administrative functions of the Secretariat will sit with Aequitas Consulting in London. Secretariat support will include:

  1. Responsibility for all administrative arrangements relating to the Commission’s meetings.
  2. Production of briefings and all other documentation required for the Commission’s meetings.
  3. Desk research.
  4. Engagement with key stakeholders.
  5. Administration of calls for evidence.
  6. Analysis of responses.
  7. Facilitation of the production and publication of the two reports.
  8. Promotion and all communications of the two reports and relevant Commission activities.


The commission will operate for a maximum of a year. During this period, the Commission is expected to meet once in Bayelsa State, the Expert Working Group twice virtually and either one or two international evidence sessions (location tbc).

The programme of work will be agreed by the Chair and Secretariat.


The Commission will be independent of any other organisation, but will be ultimately accountable to the Governor of Bayelsa State to whom they will present the final findings of the Commission.

Appendix 1: Bayelsa State Oil and Environmental Commission Terms of Reference
Appendix 2: The Remit, Composition and Methodology of the Bayelsa State Oil and Environmental Commission
Appendix 3: Statement by Professor Allan Jamieson
Appendix 4: Scientific Study Methodology
Appendix 5: Biographies