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10 Jul 2018

Eunice Murathe, Daily Nation (Kenya)

Kenya Railways probes allegations of racism against China Road & Bridge Corporation

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"Chinese firm on the spot over 'mistreament' of locals"

Kenya Railways (KR) has given the Chinese operator of the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) 72 hours to respond to claims of mistreatment of local staff. KR wants China Road and Bridge Corporation (CRBC) to file a report on the alleged mistreatment. In a press statement, the corporation said it will also conduct its own investigation. “Kenya Railways has launched investigations into alleged incidents of mistreatment of local staff employed to facilitate operations at the SGR being undertaken by CRBC under an operations & maintenance services contract entered into by the parties in May, 2017,” KR said. “We have instructed the Standard Gauge Railway operator, China Road and Bridge Corporation, to submit a report within 72 hours for critical review against what is in the public domain,” the statement said.

The directive follows media reports of mistreatment of local staff by the Chinese firm. “We have also deployed our human resources team to engage with the local staff to independently establish the authenticity of these allegations.” Kenya Railways said the reports have elicited strong emotions from the public. "The outrage, anger and disappointment expressed is understandable and we share the same sentiments. This unethical conduct, if found to be authentic, is completely unacceptable,” KR said.

Part of the following timelines

Kenya: Govt. agency probes allegations of racism against China Road & Bridge Corporation against local staff

Kenya: China-backed Standard Gauge Railway

Kenya: China-backed Standard Gauge Railway