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Old 21st Oct 2006, 14:33
  #1275 (permalink)  
Mama Mangrove
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 201
It's just as well you're not a betting man then!
I'm absolutely delighted to hear that the hostages have been released and that the reports of yesterday saying that one man had died have proved incorrect.
I just hope that if there are any lessons to be learned from this (and I'm certain that there are) they will be acted upon and that the authorities and companies like Bristow and CHC won't just lapse into complacency and come out with the old chestnut of, 'oh well, none of the expatriates taken hostage have been killed so far'.
Tokunbo is certainly right in his statement that all the companies in Nigeria have a duty of care to their staff, especially where their security and health are concerned during yet another violent episode in the history of Nigeria. If what he says about healthcare is true, then Bristow should be ashamed of themselves. There certainly were good clinics and trauma centres around in Nigeria when I was there - it's just a matter of paying the money for staff to go there. I always thought the SMI clinic in Port Harcourt was particularly good, though it's location is rather poor and it must be difficult to get there at night now if so many companies have a curfew. I guess everyone has MOPOL standing by to escort any staff who have to go at on essential business or need to get urgent medical treatment at night. With the possibility of being injured or getting sick as high as it is in Nigeria there's no excuse for not ensuring everyone has the best healthcare possible. With Bristow now being an American company I would have thought that if any of their staff fell sick and died, they could be sued in the American courts if it could be proved that the company had failed to make adequate provision for their medical treatment when in country.
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