Nigeria: Workers allege 'inhuman treatment', use of underaged labour and ban on unionisation at Lee Group

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Company response
2 June 2008

Lee Group's response

Author: Lee Group

We are taking the false allegations by NUCFRLANMPE very seriously, and are working with all the relative Government agencies on this matter to resolve and to gather information to prove that NUCFRLANMPE allegation are false.

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Article
12 May 2008

[PDF] Lee Group's response

Author: Lee Group

Our group has been operating in Nigeria for nearly 43 years and employs thousands of Nigerians, providing them gainful employment and contributing considerably to the growth of the Nigerian economy...We operate within the laws of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and respect the rights of all our employees including the right to belong to any trade union of their choice...Our factories operate on high standard of industrial safety and observe best practices...The group does not as alleged by officials of NUCFLRANMPE use the police to harass or brutalize innocent workers or to thwart union activities

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Article
11 May 2008

Lee Group and abuse of Nigerian workers

Author: Editorial, Business Day [Nigeria]

Barely one week after May Day celebrations...workers of Lee Group of Companies in [Nigeria] raised an alarm over abuses and inhuman treatment meted out to them by the...company...According to the president of the [National Union of Chemical, Footwears, Rubber, Leather and Non-Metallic Products], Boniface Isok, Lee Group...recruits under-age workers in its factories and has prohibited union activities...Other complaints against Lee Group included...use of village heads and other slave merchants to enforce dehumanizing activities, indiscriminate use of security agents to harass and brutalise workers...[I]t would be refreshing to know if Lee Group paid any compensation to the families of the 80 workers who died in its factory 15 years ago, and the company's level of commitment to sanctions (if any) after the unfortunate incident.

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