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Police rescue workers ‘locked in rice factory

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KANO State police command have rescued more than 100 people locked in a rice-processing factory, ‘Popular Farm’ and forced to work throughout coronavirus lockdown.

  The Indian owned rice mill in Kano, north of Nigeria,  allegedly held their workers from going to their homes from the end of March when the lockdown was announced;  promising the workers of additional $13 (£10) a month on top of their $72 monthly salary.

  Report says, those who did not accept were threatened with sack.

According to police spokesman in the state, Abdullahi Haruna, “the plant has now been shut down and the owners are being investigated for “holding the men against their will”.

  He said that 126 people had been found, although sources say, there were about 300 workers in the factory.

According to reliable source, some of the men were forced to work most of the time during their incarceration, with little food.

  “We were allowed to rest for only a short time, no prayers were allowed, no family visits,” 28-year-old Hamza Ibrahim, one of those rescued, told the media.

  The police were tipped off about the men’s plight after one of them called a human rights organisation.

   “What I saw was heart breaking. Where the company kept these people to live isn’t fit for animals,” Karibu Yahaya Kabara of the Global Human Rights said.

The human rights group has vowed to ensure that the rights of the workers are restored and the slave employers brought t to book.

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