Screen Shot 2015-05-24 at 16.03.38By John Donovan

Ann Pickard replaced David Lawrence as Shell VP for the Arctic after Shell’s 2012 disastrous Arctic drilling fiasco, aptly described by the then U.S. Interior Secretary, Ken Salazar, as a Screw Up.

Lawrence of Alaska, the chosen fall guy, was fired.

Ann Pickard is now being presented as being a safe pair of hands.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

When she was a senior Royal Dutch Shell executive in Africa, Ann Pickard boasted to the U.S. Ambassador Robin Sanders that Shell had infiltrated spies into key positions throughout Nigerian government ministries and knew everything that was going on.

Unfortunately for Ms Pickard, this highly confidential and embarrassing information was exposed in leaked U.S. Embassy cables.

One such cable quoted her hesitancy in talking to U.S. diplomats.

‘Pickard has repeatedly told us she does not like to talk to (U.S. government) officials because the (U.S. government) is “leaky”,’ the cable reads.

Ann Pickard knew about and was therefore complicit in Shell’s industrial scale spying on and controlling the host Nigerian government.

She recklessly boasted about Shell’s flouting of its own claimed business principles and also made imprudent comments to the U.S. Ambassador about China and Russia.

Does this record suggest the actions of an honest, reliable safe pair of hands?

Having got its corporate fingers burnt once already, it is simply astonishing that the fate of Shell’s resurrected Arctic drilling campaign is being entrusted by Shell and President Obama to such an incompetent, unscrupulous individual, as Ann Pickard.

WikiLeaks: Oil giant Shell ‘more powerful than Nigerian government’ and infiltrated every office: Mail Online

WikiLeaks: Shell ‘knows everything’ about the Nigerian government: The Telegraph

WikiLeaks cables: Shell’s grip on Nigerian state revealed: The Guardian

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