LONDON ASSEMBLY PASSES MOTION CONDEMNING LONDON OLYMPIC SPONSOR DOW
This morning the London Assembly passed a motion, with a strong majority of 16 to 7, condemning Dow Chemical and its role in the aftermath of the Bhopal Disaster whilst further condemning both LOCOG and the International Olympic Committee for agreeing sponsorship deals with such a disreputable company.
The motion was proposed by Navin Shah AM who said whilst referring to LOCOG”s and the IOC’s own ethical guidelines:
“Dow are the prime example of an unethical sponsor, their subsidiary is wanted on criminal charges of culpable homicide and the IOC are looking increasingly like a faceless and shameless corporation… It’s not too late, the IOC must reconsider their future relationships with Dow and put in place stricter guidelines for procurement of sponsors”
Lib Dem representatives stated that “Olympics should symbolize the pinnacle of human endeavor and should not be tarnished by companies like Dow – the IOC must protect their brand from an ethical point of view as well as a corporate point of view.”
Darren Johnson vice chairman of assembly and Green AM:
“Dow have moral culpability for this and their partnership with the IOC must be urgently reviewed. They’re responsible for other contaminations too and it’s important to mention that UCC (Union Carbide Corporation, the perpetrators of the 1984 Bhopal Disaster) cannot absolve responsibility by merging with DOW – otherwise no company would ever be held responsible for such disasters”
Opposed by all Conservative members, led by Andrew Boff who bizarrely suggested Dow were blameless and there was no evidence to support their alleged responsibility, Navins motion however was passed with support by Greens, Lib Dems & Labour.
In response to Andrew Boff stating there was no evidence in terms of Dow’s culpability, Shah suggested he should make the effort to seek out the research and evidence, especially that which has been gathered by the likes of Amnesty and The Bhopal Medical Appeal.
Meredith Alexander, erstwhile sustainability commissioner advising LOCOG said:
“The London Assembly’s vote to condemn Dow’s involvement in the Games is just the latest indication that Londoners don’t want this toxic company stealing our Olympic glory. From London to Londonderry, the people of the UK are rejecting Dow’s unethical sponsorship. Dow is the company now responsible for the Bhopal tragedy that killed over 20,000 people. It has no place at what we all hope will be the most sustainable Olympics.”
Colin Toogood, The Bhopal Medical Appeal said:
“This completely vindicates all that we have been saying since the London Games sponsorship issue was announced. Perhaps, if the London elections had been a year earlier, we would have seen Dow kicked out of London and prevented any harm being done to the reputation of the London Games. Equally, if LOCOG had bothered to listen to us, or if Lord Coe had ever arranged to meet, us we would have been able to explain the facts to them and help ensure that the Games could stand up to the sustainability claims that have been made. Clearly, with respect to Dow Chemical as a sponsor, the London Games have failed badly.
For further info, interview requests with Bhopal Medical Appeal / Navin Shah:
Colin Toogood: 07798 845074