Hearing of a case filed by a former Facebook content moderator against the American social media giant’s parent company, Meta, over alleged exploitation and poor working conditions at its Nairobi office failed to take off on Thursday due to absence of the firm’s lawyer.
The Employment and Labour Relations court was set to hear submissions from the parties in the lawsuit but Meta’s lawyer, Fred Ojiambo, said he was involved in a tribunal appointed by retired President Uhuru Kenyatta to investigate misconduct claims against suspended Judge Juma Chitembwe.
The court was scheduled to hear arguments by Meta that it cannot be tried in Kenya. The firm has argued that Meta Platforms Inc and Meta Platforms Ireland Limited, which are listed as respondents in the suit, are foreign corporations and neither resident nor trading in Kenya.
Meta further argues that the 12 petitioners led by Daniel Motaung’, a South African had been contracted by a third party, which had been outsourced for content moderation services on Facebook.
Mr Motaung’, said the American social media giant firm acted negligently by failing to provide moderators with adequate psychosocial support after exposing them to graphic content.
He claimed he was sacked after questioning the working conditions in the Nairobi office.
The firm was sued alongside its local outsourcing agent Samasource Kenya EPZ Limited, a company registered in the United States.