‘Chinese work like slaves’

The living quarters are shielded by sheets of galvanise which line the length of the compound.

While, more than 70 of them were detained in Port-of-Spain for protesting for their pay, about 100 stayed behind the camp which stank of stale urine.

They kept themselves hidden away and the few who crawled out of the unplastered concrete structures waved their hands to sign they did not speak English. The compound is divided into two with one section used as a materials stockpile.

In the other area, small brick housing units are lined in the shape of an open ended rectangle. Laundry hung limply from lines stretching along the length of the barrack-type compound.

One worker who spoke in broken English and seemed afraid kept denying they were being mistreated or underpaid by the company.

A green vehicle drove into the camp then abruptly spun around and exited the compound.

The gate was soon closed after the Newsday news team left the camp. Residents who live near the camp estimate 300 Chinese labourers stay there. The labourers are mostly peaceful and keep to themselves, they said.

One resident said the labourers work hard “like slaves”, leaving the camp very early on mornings and returning late on evenings.

At times, he sees them fishing in drains which line nearby ochro and dasheen bush fields.

Sometimes they walk to the small parlours which dot the main road.

The labourers, the resident said, have been seen defecating in the fields and at times the yelps of dogs are heard coming from the camp.

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"‘Chinese work like slaves’"

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