An employee of Nigerian Bottling Company, NBC, identified as Emmanuel Onuche, has filed a suit against the company before the National Industrial Court in Lagos State, seeking N110million compensation for allegedly becoming blind in the course of duty.
According to Punch, Onuche claimed to have been involved in an industrial accident on May 31, 2013, in the NBC plant in Ikeja, Lagos State, during which he sustained caustic soda burns, rendering him completely blind in both eyes.
Onuche, who allegedly worked as a contract staff in the Quality Assurance Department, blamed the company for the industrial accident which according to him, was as a result of their carelessness by failing to provide safety wears by the company for workers.
The complainant further claimed that the company had failed to pay him any compensation since the incident happened at the NBC plant in Ikeja.
He also accused the NBC of ignoring a letter which he wrote through a lawyer, Ali Abba, demanding his financial compensation so he could urgently go for an eye surgery before he became completely blind.
Onuche further alleged that he was sacked, while his N20,000 monthly salary was stopped because he demanded to be given financial compensation.
He disclosed that his suit against the company followed a letter dated August 18, 2015, which he wrote to the Directorate of Citizens’ Rights, Lagos State Ministry of Justice, requesting legal representation.
Joined as defendants in the suit are the Nigerian Bottling Company Limited and Coca-Cola Limited.
Onuche is seeking an order, “compelling the defendants to immediately pay the claimant the sum of N100m as insurance claims and compensation for the industrial accident in which he sustained caustic soda burns in both eyes rendering him blind as a result of poor safety procedures during his normal schedule as a contract staff member in the Quality Assurance Department of the defendants.”
The claimant is also seeking “special damages in the sum of N10m on the grounds of trauma and pains of disabilities due to caustic soda burns in both eyes rendering him blind as a result of poor factory safety procedures.”
Meanwhile, the defendants have not replied the claimant’s suit as at the time of filing this report.