A Chinese company in Ogun State has locked up Nigerians working in the firm and refused to let them leave despite a lockdown order in the state instituted by President Muhammadu Buhari.
The workers are being held against their wish despite the company owing them months of unpaid salaries
Workers of the company in Ogun Guangdong Free Trade Zone, who were visibly angry at the decision of the management, refused to work, staged a protest, and also set a truck belonging to the company ablaze.
Recall that the Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Abimbola Oyeyemi, described the incident as an ordinary dispute between the workers and the management.
He also added that the workers had been released to go to their houses.
Unmoved by the protest action of the workers, the company kept the employees inside the company and have continued to force them to work.
This is in contravention of an order by President Buhari that residents of Lagos, Ogun and the Federal Capital Territory should remain home or work remotely in order to curb further spread of Coronavirus.
One of the workers, who spoke with SaharaReporters, revealed that the company was being backed by Nigeria Export Processing Zones Authority, adding that the organisation assured the Chinese firm of safety from any form of sanction from government.
Keeping to its words, the company has continued working for 20 days as both the Ogun State and Federal governments look the other way.
The workers singled out the NEPZA Zone Administrator, Mr Solomon Topa, and one Mr Ofili Emmanuel, as among those enslaving Nigerians at the factory.
“The NEPZA Zone Administrator, Mr Solomon Topa, has not risen up to his duties to regulate and monitor the activities of the zone, he is only there for his monetary and selfish gains.
“He is a tool in the Chinese hands. Also working closely with him is one Mr Ofili Emmanuel who has been there for over six years and sees himself as a demi-god in the zone therefore enriching themselves through the maltreatment of Nigerians.
“As we speak, there are Nigerians holed up in the factories in this pandemic period, workers are owed and all complaints to Solomon Topa and at times through Emmanuel Ofili, had proved abortive,” one of the workers said.
The workers have vowed to continue rioting to ensure their freedom, lamenting that government had not come to their aid.
They urged both the federal and state governments as well as the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 to look into their plight and that of other Nigerians being locked down in Chinese factories in Ogun Guangdong Free Trade Zone.