KENYA: Govt tells Kenyans to stop whining about Chinese mistreatment and learn from their masters
|FILE – Passengers arrive to purchase tickets for the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) line constructed by the China Road and Bridge Corporation (CRBC) and financed by Chinese government at the Nairobi Terminus in Nairobi, Kenya, July 28, 2017.|
Kenya Tells Workers to Learn from Chinese, Despite Abuse Allegations
In recent weeks, Kenyan media have been awash with reports and images of what appears to show Kenyan workers being mistreated by the Chinese builders of the Standard Gauge Railway that was launched in 2017. One image showed dozens of workers lying on their stomachs.
The Kenyan government has promised to take action against those behind the abuses. However, government spokesman Eric Kiraithe says his fellow countrymen’s behavior at work is also to blame.
“Even as we talk about the [railway] and the racism and all that, it might be necessary for us as a country to change our work ethic,” Kiraithe said.
Kiraithe called on Kenyans working at the railway to learn from the Chinese on how to operate and service it, so they can take over in the future.
“What we are expecting those Kenyans to do, those with an opportunity, is to shift the focus on the challenge at hand,” he said. “We are aware as a government that there are forces which are not very friendly to that project.”
The Chinese-financed railway has also come under criticism from environmental activists because the train passes through a national park.
According to Kenyan media, the train has hit buffalos and lions. The government said the accidents were “unintentional.”
“Right now, they passed the railway line, and there’s three roads being proposed through the same Nairobi national park,” said Reinhard Bonke of the Friends of Nairobi National Park. “And again, when the railway goes to the park, we have issues like pollution inside the park. We don’t know yet, but the issue of poaching can be an issue. All this will lead to the depletion of the park.”
The government insists it is satisfied with the plans to protect the animals in the parks and along the railway line. Conservationists say those plans are inadequate.
—— AUTO – GENERATED; Published (Halifax Canada Time AST) on: July 11, 2018 at 07:37PM