Living with the forest and its resources, the Waorani people are facing the threat of oil extraction, and seeing the rivers of their territory contaminated by successive oil spills. Witnessing the disappearance of most of their lands and ecosystems, they are engaged in a struggle to maintain their traditions and way of life, going so far as to file a complaint against PetroOriental.
Weya Cahuiya, a Waorani activist from Ñuneno village testifies: “We call on governments to respect our territory but they never paid attention to us and attack us. Let us live as we want, let us manage our territory. In the last spill, the river went black and our animals died, dogs, tapirs, chickens and fish died. The plants, bananas, yucca, all dead. We are not complaining about other parts of the country, we are outraged by what is happening in our home.”
Despite the emergency reality on the ground, the lack of presence of the State and non-governmental organizations creates a frightening scenario of powerlessness.