Reports from Kano state says police has rescued over 600 laborers locked up in a rice factory for three months in Challawa industrial area of Kano, the Kano state capital.
According to police command in Kano, they have been in the factory for three months.
According to some of the workers who spoke to our news men, The authorities of the factory threatened with their jobs saying they will lose their job if they opted to go home to see their families due to the fear of bringing COVID-19 into the factory.
Following a tip off, the Kano state police command deployed their men to the factory on Monday and arrested four managers, released the detained workers after obtaining a court injunction.
One of the freed workers told journalists that he has been in the factory since March 23rd without setting his foot outside.
Another worker named Haruna Salihu, said he had been in the factory since March 28 and was denied time to visit his family and parents. “Our family members are seriously disturbed, as they don’t know the (condition we are in). My wife and my kids used to come to the factory’s gate and I couldn’t go and meet them.
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“We were tricked to stay in the factory for five days, then (it was) extended to seven days, then two weeks and subsequently extended to one month. We are now detained for over three months.
There are about 600 workers in the factory. We are sleeping in a very poor environment. I am appealing to authorities to allow me to go back to my family.”
According to another employee, though he was not forced to stay, he was threatened with dismissal if he decided to go outside the factory.
Also, a truck driver, Hashimu Isa, who brought paddy rice from Kebbi State, narrated how he was kept in the factory for three days without going out.
The manager of the rice mill, Abdulkareem, regretted the incident, saying he was not aware of the workers’ terrible condition.
The police spokesperson in Kano, Abdullahi Haruna Kiyawa, said they have arrested four management staff of the factory, and investigation is ongoing.