Published on Sahara Reporters (http://saharareporters.com)
Chinese Expats Treat Nigerian Employees As Punching Bags
By site admin
Created Oct 18 2011 - 17:22
Posted: October 18, 2011 - 17:22
By SaharaReporters, New York
The Chinese kick Nigerian workers on the testicles when they are not submissive.
If you are a Nigerian working for the Chinese, you are at risk of losing your private parts, says Maaji Meriga, after he practically lost the use of his manhood while working to construct railway tracks in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital, for the China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation (CCECC), a major overseas interest of the Chinese government.
The 62-year-old casual worker and bread winner of a family of 6 children was left potentially impotent when the company’s transport manager, Marcho Chin, popularly called ‘old soldier’, allegedly kicked him on his testicles and punched him on the ear to prove who is boss.
It all began a month into his job as a water tanker driver on January 29, 2011 at about 11:00am when Old Soldier asked Mr. Meriga to fill his tank and water the road leading to the CCECC yard, around Karamajiji Village near the Abuja airport. Mr. Meriga said while en route and spraying the ground, another Chinese in charge of drainages stopped him close to the yard and asked he fill two drums with water. He obliged, turned off the main spray machine, opened the side tap and began filling the drums when Old Soldier came and queried him.
“He said I am wasting resources, that I want to spoil the tanker. I told him that I can’t spoil it. He just went and opened the spray machine,” said Mr. Meriga. “I told him that it is his brother that asked me to fill the drums. I bent down to switch off the spray machine when he then kicked me from behind on my scrotum and testes. I immediately fell down. As I got up and asked him ‘master why?’ he then blew me on the ear before entering his jeep and drove to the yard.
Mr. Meriga immediately reported the case to the company’s personnel manager, Mr. Austin, but was ordered out of the premises, without any medical attention given to him.
“I reported at Karamajiji Police Station. I naked myself before the Police and showed them what happened to me. They saw my thing was swelling. I told them I am dying, I need,” Mr. Meriga said. “One officer followed me to the company but Mr. Austin told the Policeman he will not allow the white man go to station unless order comes from above.”
But several days later the order never came. By this time, Mr. Meriga’s left testicle had become swollen to the extent he was admitted for five days at the Garaku General Hospital in Nasarawa State. He was in need of urgent surgery as “examination of the testis showed grossly enlarged left hemi scrotum with marked tenderness of contiguous testis”. One medical record stated that an impression of inflammation was “made secondary to direct blow resulting from a beating”.
Regardless, the Chinese company had made it clear the Nigeria Police couldn’t do them anything; after all Mr. Meriga wouldn’t be the first to receive a ‘Chinese kick to the balls’ and nothing would come out of it.
A year earlier, on February 5, 2010, another of the company’s water tanker drivers, Michael Francis, a casual staff for over a year, had on resumption of duty that morning told Old Soldier the pump of the tanker to be used to wet the ground was faulty. He was asked to manage it.
But later that day, the assistant transport manager, Mr. Lie, better known as ‘Bedebede’, wanted to reduce his daily wage as the ground he had been allotted was not properly wet. His refusal allegedly earned him a kick to the groin. He fainted on the spot and was subsequently hospitalised for over a week at Access Hospital located along Police Barracks Road, Gwagwa, Abuja.
“He held my shirt, slapped and kicked me in the penis when I refused to give my wages card for him to cut some hours from the work I had done that day,” said the 29-year-old. “The pay is N600 a day and we can work from 7am to 5pm. I refused since it wasn’t my fault, because they can cut your money by half, then how much do I have left?”
The company had tried denying having any Chinese staff bearing that name but conceded when Mr. Francis produced a picture of himself and Bedebede taken together on December 16, 2009 at the CCECC yard. But again, the company’s Nigerian personnel manager, Mr. Austin, was involved in sweeping the case under the carpet. Mr. Francis resigned from the company on February 16, 2010 as he couldn’t resume work immediately after he was discharged, as the company had mandated. He was not compensated.
In pains, distraught, and in urgent need of money for his operation, Mr. Meriga in February 2011 took his plight to the Brekete Family Show, a human rights radio magazine talk show, run by Ahmad Isah, who brought him and Mr. Francis on live radio to tell their stories.
“Nigerians are being brutalised by foreigners in our own country. In their country, this can never happen. We reported to the Human Rights Commission, Police, Ministry of Justice, everywhere. What has anyone done to the foreigners or the company? Nothing!” Mr. Isah lamented. “If you see how swollen his testicles were. He couldn’t do anything, he couldn’t wear pant, even to stand was a problem. I had to spend over N350,000 of my own personal money to pay for Meriga’s surgery and hospital bills at the National Hospital, just to save his life. The company did nothing for him. It is pathetic!”
Mr. Meriga petitioned the Commissioner of Police of the FCT Police Command on February 22, 2011, in a case of criminal force and assault. Eight months later, the Police spokesperson, Jimoh Moshood, says investigations are still on.
“The DPO Lugbe handling the case told me the matter has not being charged to court because the complainant went for medical treatment and has not returned for the police to conclude their investigation and charge the person to court,” Mr. Moshood said.
But contrary to Mr. Moshood’s claims, the Police in an unprecedented record time of six days had concluded the case in favour of the Chinese eight months ago, through Chief Superintendent of Police Olufemi Abaniwonda, the Divisional Police Officer of Lugbe Division.
CSP Abaniwonda declared in his report dated February 28 that as a “matter of fact, there is no case to be arraigned in court because no witness to facilitate the prosecution”. But Mr. Meriga had provided several witnesses whom the DPO dismissed as “hostile witnesses” collaborating “to see how they can make false claim on the Chineseman”. He then wrote that Mr. Meriga be warned to “desist in parading himself within the company”.
CSP Abaniwonda further compromised his authority. He had received a letter from the Chinese company on February 28 requesting for his report on the case. Despite being a criminal case with police reports only to be given to courts of law, the DPO in a few hours quickly dispatched a signed copy of the 3-page Police report directly to CCECC’s Managing Director at Plot 215 Cadastral Zone, KM 10, Umaru Yar’Adua Way, Airport Road, Abuja. To please the Chinese, he wrote Mr. Meriga was never kicked in the groin.
The DPO by his actions effectively denied Mr. Meriga his right to seek justice for the assault he acknowledged occurred when he wrote that Old Soldier “slapped the complainant on the face as the complainant alleged”. The content of the Police report further suggests Old Soldier was never interviewed on the incident, as he was never identified by his real name, only described as a suspect named “Mr. Old Soldier”.
A lawyer, Nsikan Robinson, had also voluntarily taken up the case then. His best effort was to write CCECC on February 22, 2011 giving the company seven days to repatriate Old Soldier and Bedebede, pay N10 million compensation to each of his clients, and for the company to bear their medical expenses. Eight months on he says lack of funds and not fear has hindered him from instituting legal action against the company.
Very little has indeed being done in the eight months since Messrs. Meriga and Francis also petitioned the Executive Secretary, National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) on February 16, 2011 and the Director General, Legal Aid Council of Nigeria on June 24, 2011.
Only once since July did Mr. Francis say a lady called him from the Legal Aid Council, a government agency which gives free legal aid, promising to call again to give him an appointment. The most the NHRC, which has constitutional powers to prosecute cases of Human Rights abuse, have done is exchange of letters with the Chinese company.
“We demanded a full response from the alleged company. The company’s lawyer wrote back referring us to the police report which rather blamed Meriga than the company,” said Lambert Oparah, the Human Rights Commission spokesperson, who said the commission has being pushing to settle the case by dialogue with all parties.
Phone calls, text and email messages to the Chinese Embassy in Nigeria, including Mr. Wang, the embassy’s representative in Lagos State, went unanswered. But the Chinese company through their solicitors, Paul Attayi and Co, categorically dismissed Messrs. Meriga and Francis stories as “gold digging exercises” and told the Human Rights Commission that they should go to court to seek redress.
“Our clients are prepared and determined to frustrate this exercise. Our client is prepared to defend itself against such frivolous and vexation claims with fanatical determination,” said Mr. Attayi while stating that the company “recognises and protects” the rights of all employees as contained in their employment letters.
But employees of the company who spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of reprisal say their working conditions are greatly abused and the worst in the construction industry. Most workers say they don’t have employment letters and have remained casual labourers for months, some years, thus being denied such benefits as health insurance and pensions.
“If you say you can use a machine or you can drive, they test you. If you pass they give you a form you fill there and return to them before you start work. They don’t give you a copy,” said one labourer. “In 40 people, maybe five are staff, the rest are casual. They keep promising they will staff us. A lot of us are getting injured but because we are not staff, company will not take care of you. Our Nigerians in company management are not helping us. What can we do? To find work is difficult. We just have to accept.”
When Mr. Austin, the company’s personnel manager was contacted on Messrs. Meriga and Francis case, he feigned ignorance of them stating: “I don’t know very well. Actually we have many cases on ground but I can’t recall now. Are they our workers?” On the illegality of the company engaging people on casual labour for extended periods, he quickly said, “that’s where my statement stops”.
A successful surgery was performed on Mr. Meriga’s testicle on July 7. He is still on medication but says he doesn’t take for granted anytime he has an erection. Some months back, his manhood was dysfunctional. His case is one of justice delayed is justice denied as he is losing faith in Nigeria defending the rights of its citizens at home and abroad.
“I don’t think Nigerians can go to China and behave like that and go free. I want Nigeria to follow the law and give me justice,” Mr. Meriga says.
Leaders shunning its own is an outrage for the love of money! I heard that Nigeria was corrupt; I never thought it could go this far. When I get whats promised to me, I will visit the injured.
Although this story was published here in 2011, it is still
a current issue in the Motherland of Africa. Chineese companies
are the rule not the Nigerian Police or the government. What
the (F*) is goin on that this type of cruelty is allowed?
PASS THIS ON!!!
@ Diane Friday.. We at Global Green Development Group (GGDG) just had our CEO Mary Flowers and our Agriculture and Energy development advance team return from a successful trade mission in Abuja. GGDG adheres to the United Nations Programme Development guidelines and Millenium Development Goals to (1) Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger, (2) Achieve universal primary education, (3) promote gender equality and empower women (4) Reduce child mortality (5) Improve Maternal Health (6) Combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases (7) Ensure environmental sustainability and (8) Develop a global partnership for development where government corruption and bribes MOSTLY done by foreigners exploiting African resources are dealt with severely with enforceable U.N. and WTO sanctions. You must have heard that the U.S. and Europeans and Asians are also corrupt and brought their capitalist corruption to ALL of the former African colonies.
@TheArtiste Hassan I'm happy to report that GGDG beat out the Chinese in a head-to-head competition to build bio-diesel refineries in Benue and Imo State using the Jatropha plant as feedstock because we had the technical superiority in our program and the MDG goals. All the Chinese had was the money for bribes. They don't care about the African people.
Thank you Stosh for this great news report from the Motherland.
This is the best news of all within this whole story and we can
continue to beat them out everytime here and there when we set
our mind and goal to do so.
GIVE MARY THE GREETINGS FROM ME/US!
Reading this story is so sad and heartbreaking. The only way Mr. Meriga is going to get any justice is to keep fighting for it. It will be a long and hard fight. But if you get enough people to hold your back, maybe just maybe something can be done.
Finding the right people, lawyers, companies, etc. is one of the hardest journey on this earth today. If you don't have money, forget it. Forget any type of Legal Aid because they all sit behind the round table and discuss how not to help you. It's so much BS going on this planet and around the global you just don't know who the hell to TRUST.
Maybe start spreading your story around the Global and let everyone see and hear Mr. Meriga cry for HELP! CLICK HERE AND START A CAUSE AND SHARE THIS STORY WITH THE REST OF ...
Why is it necessary to allow any foreigners into Afrika and give them so much power. Since Afrika has more resources than the world at large, it seems to me that we shoot ourselves in the foot by not developing these infrastructures with Afrikans themselves.
I&I agree Baba Kwame, we (the global African Community) shoot ourself not just in the foot but also in the HEAD when allowing so-called business to be conducted this way. Africans doing business in the USA are most qualified to do this business and should be given priority at the bids. Surely we would not be kicking folk in the testicales and treating them like we were treated duing our enslavement here and throughout the world.
@Stosh My message is to our brothers and sisters who are leaders who ought to be ashamed for letting outsiders come in and treat their own people to be treated in such a manner. Once upon a time, there was more Unity and now they have forgotten the history! Sure, I know there is corrution all over the world but if we don't stand up against those who come to Africa and treat the native brothers & sisters with disrespect then they will take over; all for the love of money they will lose their voice in their own country. I'm hoping the leaders hear me. They should not put another race above their own people for the love of money!
Congrats to GGDG and I hope we do not hear of such treatments being doneby your company to the native of Nigerians.
THE DIVINE SOLUTIONS FOR OUR PEOPLE PROBLEMS (GLOBALLY), IS REPARATIONS NOW, FOR THOSE WHO ARE SERIOUS ABOUT SERIOUNESS IN SAVING SELF AND OUR PEOPLE..
AS LONG AS WE MERRY GO ROUND AROUND THE ISSUES OF REPARATIONS NOW, WE ARE DOOMED.
FOR THOSE OF US WHO THINK WE/OUR PEOPLE OWN AFRIKA, THINK AGAIN.
MOST OF US DO NOT OWN OUR OWN MINDS AND PRESENTLY WE DO NOT OWN AFRIKA. WHEN WE ARE NOT LIEN HOLDERS (DIVINE) LIEN HOLDERS OF OUR OWN MINDS, DIVINE FREE CRITICAL THINKERS, NON CONFORMIST TO EVIL CONCEPTS, WE WILL NEVER BE ABLE TO LEARN AND KNOW OUR PEOPLE DIVINE SOLUTIONS.
EVERYONE OF US (GLOBALLY) ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR WHAT WE SEE HAPPENING TO OUR PEOPLE GLOBALLY.
NAME THE PERIOD OF TIME WHEN THERE WAS MORE UNITY AMONG OUR PEOPLE, WHICH UNITY WAS IT, STILL PROFANE OR DIVINE?
"Hope is the worst of all evils, for it prolongs the torment of man." Nietzsche
@ Diane Friday..In 1994 I did a radio interview with Marcus Garvey Jr. that changed my life about "Race First."
He said that believing the idea that another group of people(children of former slaveholders) will lift us up to equality with them is a curse upon our race. He said that nowhere in the world has one group of people lifted up another group of people equal to themselves and he challenged us to show an example anywhere in world history.
The only treatment you will ever hear about GGDG in Nigeria and all of Africa will be uplifting.
The Warrior Spirit of Afrikan people left when the original Mind of Afrikan people was broken by those who came to conquer the Afrikan people.
Afrikan people once lived as a free, honorable, dignified, self respected and self protected people, we were as the stallion roaming freely, before its spirit is broken.
The Afrikan people, in and out of Afrika, no longer has a self protective warrior spirit, we have been broken by those who replaced our original mind with the mind of Lucifer the Human Being, and as the mind, so is the spirit.
Black people no longer have the mind that will project a warrior spirit against those who have oppressed Black people, but we are quick to display a spirit of self destruction against each other, because that is the quality of mind that have Black people being as we are today, the mind of our oppressors.
Reclaim your Divine Mind and the Spirit will be as your mind direct it to be.
All Rights Reserved
I was listening to the deceased author, Behold a Pale Horse [Milton William Cooper] about the Illuminati.
Cooper: They don't wants laws agaisnt sexual promiscuity. That is why they don't want families. That is why they don't want marriage. That is why they encourage homosexuality. There is a method to their madness. There is no method to our ignorance. Because you are operating from a place of ignorance and Until you change that, you will be bumping into each other saying and doing the wrong things not understanding the nature of your enemy, and if you do not understand the nature of your enemies and the weapaons they use, you cannot fight that enemy, you can't fight the battle, you shouldn't be on the battlefield. That is why you are losing the war.Don't tell me you are not, becasue I am in a place about great knowledge as to who is winning and who is losing this war, and I can assure you are losing the war. Doesn't mean it can't be turned around. But it will never be turned around until you learn what you need to know.
WE CANNOT WIN THE BATTLE UNTIL WE FULLY COMPREHEND THE NATURE OF OUR ENEMIES.
IF IT AIN'T RAW, IT AIN'T REAL!!! IF IT AIN'T REAL, IT AIN'T RAW!!!
SPIRITUALLY DEAD, TO THE POINT EVEN CEMETERIES/GRAVEYARDS ARE MORE HEALTHIER THAN MOST OF OUR PEOPLE MIND-SET.
Homosexuals/Gay,bi-sexual, drugs, in religions, politics, hollywood, interracial relationships, jail, prison.
Knowing the above, how many among us (both genders) are True To the Divine Cause, the battle we must fight in order to win against the unnatural evil we are surrounded by?
THE OSCAR/EMMY CONTINUES TO GO TO THE NEW WORLD EVIL ORDER BECAUSE THEY ARE CONQUERORS OF THE MINDS.