2010-02-16 08:24:00 Tanzania quizzed over maid's YK enslavementThe suspect reportedly brought the 45-year old woman to Britain from Tanzania in 2006 By Freddy Macha, London THE CITIZEN British police have questioned a London-based Tanzanian of Asian descent over the mistreatment of a Tanzanian maid. The suspect reportedly brought the 45-year-old maid to Britain in 2006, but the woman from Kondoa District recently developed severe pain in her legs, which prompted her boss to take her to hospital. It was while the maid was in hospital that doctors alerted authorities about her serious health condition. Police questioned her employer over what was described as "inhuman and appalling"conditions she was forced to work in. The maid was then put under the care of an organisation which fights for the rights of domestic migrant workers and the Tanzania Women Association (Tawa), pending further investigations. Police investigating the case learnt that the domestic worker was being paid ten pounds (about Sh22,000) a month, which was given to her at the end of the year. Her personal belongings were kept in a shed while she slept on the kitchen floor. She was made to work every day, without break or leave, and her employer never called her by name, using a bell instead. Her boss also took away her passport, fearing she might escape. Immigration rules in Britain state that an employer cannot own a domestic worker. People brought into the country as domestic workers have the right to change employers as long as they have valid visas and work within households. However, most immigrant domestic workers are unaware of this rule and, therefore, think that their employers own them in what is widely perceived as modern-day slavery. Reports of the maid�s suffering surfaced a month after a Tanzanian couple were arrested and charged with human trafficking and immigration offences. Mr and Mrs Shariff of Birmingham were released on bail and are expected to appear in court next month. Meanwhile, another Tanzanian maid, Ms Zubeda Ali, has won her case at an employment tribunal and is awaiting a decision on her compensation. The 32-year-old woman, who hails from Lindi Region, was brought to Britain to work as a maid in March 2007. After allegations of physical and emotional abuse, her case was referred to various Tanzanian entities in the UK, including Tawa, which who sent her to London's Brent Law Community Centre. Because of the seriousness of the allegations, the legal body liaised with solicitors specialising in human trafficking cases, who requested a judicial review of Ms Ali's case. This paved the way for police investigations into the matter. Two months ago, British police officers travelled to Tanzania and met with Ms Ali�s parents in Lindi. In 2008, another Tanzanian domestic worker in the UK, Ms Elizabeth Kawogo, won a case against her employers who were ordered to pay her the equivalent of Sh140 million in compensation by a London labour tribunal. The compensation was for unpaid wages and suffering she endured at the hands of her employers, Mr and Mrs Ramzan Dhanji, who have yet to pay up. Ms Kawogo is currently being assisted by the organisation Kalayaan, which fight for the rights of migrant domestic workers in Britain, and Tawa.