Category Archives: 2024 Africa

Nigeria: Joining hands with workers worldwide – CCESSA

Joining hands with workers worldwide, BWI’s affiliate in Nigeria, the Construction and Civil Engineering Senior Staff Association (CCESSA) commemorated International Workers’ Memorial Day by honouring all those who’ve suffered from work-related accidents and demanding safer workplaces.

Mauritius: Over 1,000 rally to mark 28 April protesting dire working conditions

Over 1,000 workers, including hundreds of migrant workers, rallied in Rosehill, Mauritius on 27 April 2024 to draw public attention on the dire working conditions many workers face daily in the country. Members of the CMWEU and the CTSP closed ranks to remember all the workers who have fallen to work-related accidents and advocate for safer and healthier workplaces nationwide.

Nigeria: Raising concerns over the adverse health effects of climate change

In commemoration of the 2024 World Day for Safety and Health Work, the Federal Government and International Labour Organisation (ILO), have raised concerns over the adverse effect of climate change on existing health conditions and workplace hazards.

Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment, Ismaila Abubakar who spoke at a symposium on Tuesday in Abuja, said there was a need for the ministry to champion laws that would mitigate the adverse impact of climate change on workers, especially those engaged in outdoor jobs, as well as promote safe and healthy working environments.

Represented by the director, Office of the Permanent Secretary, Jafar Musa, he stressed the need for relevant stakeholders to develop innovative solutions and strategies to tackle the challenges posed by climate change in the work environment. Read more

Morocco: ICOH congress marks 28 April in Marrakech

The ICOH marked International Workers’ Memorial Day on the first day of the 34th International Congress on Occupational Health in Marrakech, Morocco.

Mauritius: Unions on the streets denouncing labour and human rights violations on 28 April – CTSP

The CTSP and affiliates were on the streets of Mauritius today, hundreds of migrant workers, women and youth participated in the demonstration to mark the world safety day and to denounce all violations of labour and human rights. A new page of history was written today.

Lesotho: Miners remembered on 28 April

The workers were going home from work when the bus accident happened at Tlaeeng Pass in Butha Buthe. Eight diamond mine workers from Kao Mine died while others were injured.

Tankiso Tsoeu, a data analyst at Storm Mountain Diamonds’ Kao Mine who survived the accident, says the vivid memories of the horror crash continue to haunt her.

Tankiso Tsoeu, a member of the Independent Democratic Union of Lesotho (IDU), an IndustriALL affiliate, remembers:

“On 8 February 2021, during the Covid-19 pandemic, our lives were scarred in a horrendous accident. We were supposed to go home, and excited to finally have a break and be with our families after working on a 12-hour shift for 14 days. The buses which arrived at Kao Mine at midday brought the incoming shift workers and were also supposed to take us home.”

“I was exhausted when we boarded the bus and fell asleep when the bus started moving. After what felt like a few minutes-although it was more than an hour- I felt my head hitting something, and lost consciousness. Then a colleague woke me up. I could see we were in a bus wreck lying on its side and workers were shouting for help. The driver had lost control on a road which had become slippery following a hailstorm and the bus had overturned.”

Tankiso Tsoeu recalls how workers were trapped in the wreckage.

“Whilst injured workers were rescued from the bus, unfortunately others were trapped. Some were even under the bus. There are no words to describe seeing someone lose their life while you watch and cannot do anything to help them.”

To worsen the tragedy, there was no mobile telephone connection.

“Amongst the survivors, most had lost their phones and there was no mobile network coverage. One of us had to walk up a mountain to try and find a network connection to call for help.”

The workers only got help when rescue teams arrived from Letseng and Kao Mines.

“Sadly, some workers died on the spot, while those with serious injuries were taken to Queen Mamohato Memorial Hospital in Maseru. Out of 35 passengers, eight died.”

The survivors received treatment at Letseng mine clinic and Kao Mine hired a medical doctor and clinical psychologist to attend to the workers.

Despite all the help she received, Tankiso Tsoeu says recovery has been tough.

“I am still battling. The most difficult part is that everyone expects you to be fully recovered after three years and talking about the accident might seem an exaggeration. Yet I face every day struggles especially with anxiety which never used to be the case before the accident. Recalling episodes of the anguish of the trapped miners often leads to sleepless nights.”

Glen Mpufane, IndustriALL director of mining and lead for occupational health and safety, said:

“As we commemorate the International Commemoration Day for Dead and Injured Workers, we remember the eight Kao mine workers and wish the survivors full recovery from the scars and trauma emanating from the accident. We commend the efforts of both Letseng mine clinic and Kao mine for providing post-traumatic treatment to the injured workers, recognizing that the duty of care extends beyond the mine fence.”

Namibia: Co-ordinated construction site visits reveal concerns in the lead up to 28 April

In the lead up to 28  April, SINTAICAF, NUBEGW, MANWU visited a Chinese managed road construction site to inspect the workers’ working and living conditions. Concerns were raised with the employers’ representatives (Chinese & HR managers) and details of the BWI’s IWMD ‘Enough is enough’ campaign was shared with attending participants.

Read more: BWI affiliates declare war on workplace hazards, unite for a safer future

Namibia: MANWU will hold a mass commemoration to mark 28 April

No photo description available.Metal and Allied Namibian Workers Union – MANWU will hold a mass commemoration joining with its federation NUNWU to celebrate the lives of those who fought to secure workers’ rights and reflect on the legacy of the last president, Dr. Geingob.  Approximately 1,000 people are expected to attend , including 300 women.

Rwanda: 28 April will be marked with health and safety training and a workplace awareness campaign

PhotoSTECOMA is running a 28 April awareness campaign in workplaces. Health and safety training will also  be delivered to workplace representatives.

Tanzania: Social media is central to TAMICO’s 28 April safety awareness campaign

Tanzanian construction union TAMICO  union will use social media and face-to-face engagement to push a 28 April safety awareness campaign.