Local employees ill-treated by Chinese companies in African regions
Apr 01, 2023
Beijing [China], April 1 : As China runs numerous infrastructure projects in African regions, the assault and abuse of local employees by the Chinese project managers is also prevalent, Geneva Daily reported.
Local labourers are ill-treated, abused, forcefully made to work under dire conditions and given wages which are way below contract pay.
They are often made to work for long hours and physically assaulted.
In a recent case, a Tanzanian woman was assaulted by a Chinese national. The incident took place on March 18. A woman named Lucy Paulo was assaulted by a Chinese man named Zheng Yuan Fen. She worked as a cook in Standard Gauge Railway (SGR)in the Mwanza region of Northern Tanzania as a cook and suffered serious injuries after the assault, reported Geneva Daily.
After the incident came to light, the Chinese national was arrested and detained at the Railway Police Station, initially. He was later moved to Misungwi District Police Station.
However, it is not the first incident of its kind that has come to the fore.
In another incident in September 2022, a China-run gold mining company in Zimbabwe was accused of ill-treating workers.
According to Geneva Daily, the workers were not given decent meals or accommodation while on duty. They were also not given protective gear, exposing them to hazardous chemicals in the factory.
Despite the importance of China-Africa alliances based on "mutual prosperity," China's engagement with African countries is mired in deep-rooted racial prejudices leading to violation of human rights, injustice, and exploitation, reported a Canada-based think tank, International Forum for Rights and Security (IFFRAS).
The report said that China which has become the biggest trading partner for most of the African countries and provides funds for infrastructure projects like rail-road as well as the development of natural resources continues to engage in the exploitation of its employees and labourers in their own country.
The trade partnership between China and Africa has caused many adverse effects including debt traps, over-dependence, and violation of workers and human rights in several countries of Africa. The African workers in their own country are enslaved by their foreign employers.
The report suggests that there are significant cases of labour abuses that have taken place. Local workers are not provided with protective equipment in the mining and infrastructure sectors.
When suffering from severe injuries, they are not provided with compensation or aid.
Most of the employees are working without an official contract and do not have proof of employment. This leaves them vulnerable to unfair termination.