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Does Government Inadvertently Encourage Slave Labour?

Does Government Inadvertently Encourage Slave Labour?

On Tuesday this week, on my way to work I encountered a small but vociferous group of protesters. Traffic was disrupted. Closer inspection revealed they were the aggrieved staff of Schlumberger, a multinational oil company. Their bone of contention was over how they are treated, going by the words on their placard.  It read, “Slave Labour” as they heavily chanted “Solidarity!”

I would never have thought that one of the world’s leading oilfield services provider, could be guilty of ill-treating staff. Obviously, it’s not news that some multinationals, especially in manufacturing, often treat their staff in Nigeria like slaves. I hear they go as far as carting workers in human trucks as official vehicles, and keeping them hostage on occasion to meet deadlines.

Being a new-to-the-table member of the national labour force, I found this quite disturbing and I am asking where do government come in all of this? Are our labour laws not strong enough to checkmate this? Or is slave labour just a hoax?

Must we always take to the streets before we are heard?

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If you are reading this, we would like to know what your thoughts and experiences are, regarding slave labour in Nigeria. Let us help make more jobs in our country rewarding.

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