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Politics Chinese employees at Kenya’s flagship railway risk losing work permits - here’s why

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Kenya's human rights watchdog is pushing for revocation of their work permits

play Chinese workers on the SGR (Courtesy)

Chinese employees at Kenya's Standard Gauge Railway risk losing their work permits if they cannot express themselves in the country’s official languages.

The Kenya National Commission on Human Rights (KNCHR) said it will push for revocation of their work permits should investigations into alleged mistreatment of Kenyans by the Chinese supervisors reveal that they are non-English speakers.

play Chinese employees at Kenya's Standard Gauge Railway risk losing their work permits if they cannot express themselves in the country’s official languages. (Courtesy)

 

“Our view is that no migrant worker should be allowed to work in Kenya if they can’t express themselves fluently either in English or Kiswahili,” KNCHR chairperson, Kagwira Mbogori, said while appearing before a Senate committee.

The committee is looking into reports of mistreatment and discrimination of Kenyans working at the SGR.

Discriminatory pay

It is also investigating complaints of poor working environment, discriminatory pay and benefits.

play The Senate is looking into reports of mistreatment and discrimination of Kenyans working at the SGR.

 

Labour cabinet secretary Ukur Yatani told the committee that a multi-agency committee has been formed to address the issues raised and findings of a committee of inquiry that was appointed on July 12.

“The committee of inquiry which had seven days to report accomplished the task and filed a report presenting preliminary findings on issues in view of the fact that there was a constraint in time, long distance between stations and the many issues that were being handled,” Mr Yatani said.