The family of an Italian-African MP, already a domestic name for his advocacy for migrants, have allegedly mistreated migrant workers, and it is claimed he knew of the abuses.
Italian Leftist MP Aboubakar Soumahoro, a member of the Greens and originally from the Ivory Coast, has become well-known for his advocacy for migrant farm labourers but has now been caught up in an emerging scandal involving his wife and mother-in-law as allegations have been made that his family members mistreated migrant workers and avoided paying taxes.
Previously, Soumahoro had stated that he had no knowledge of the allegations but new testimony claims that he had full knowledge of the conditions of migrant workers, the newspaper Il Giornale reports.
The allegations involve the Karibu and Consorzio Aid cooperatives which deal with the reception of asylum seekers and migrants in Italy as part of the government’s Protection System for Asylum Seekers and Refugees (SPRAR) project.
A member of the left-wing Italian Democratic Party (PD) has been accused of exploiting migrants during her election campaign by giving money to a pro-migrant group that allegedly made migrants work for free. https://t.co/ZX2BuEoNpU
— Breitbart News (@BreitbartNews) June 29, 2020
Over the weekend, several people who worked with the cooperatives claimed that the migrant workers lived in conditions where there was no hot water, no gas or electricity and that they were often unpaid and underfed.
“Without an employment contract, without salary. They only paid me twice in two years,” one man alleged.
Another man, who claimed not to have been paid from December 2020 to November 2021, claimed that Mr Soumahoro was well aware of the conditions saying, “He knew very well everything that was happening, he knows the whole situation of each house.”
This week, new allegations emerged against Marie Therese Mukamitsindo, the mother-in-law of Mr Soumahoro, including aggravated fraud and false invoicing. The new allegations are on top of those that alleged she embezzled money.
Last week, Soumahoro made the move to suspend himself from his own parliamentary group, the Green and Left Alliance, over the emerging allegations.
Angelo Bonelli, co-spokesman for Green Europe, commented on the situation over the weekend saying, “He claims to know nothing about this affair. But the issue is so dramatically important for those exploited children who fight for their rights, that we cannot fail to commit ourselves to clarity.”
The case comes just two years after another leftist MP in Italy was accused of exploiting migrants during an election campaign by giving cash to a pro-migrant group which made migrants work for nothing.
Democratic Party MP Elena Carnevali allegedly worked with an organisation known as the Ruah cooperative which helped her with leafleting and putting up election posters but the migrants were not paid for their work.
Italy May See 100,000 Illegal Boat Migrant Arrivals In 2022 If Current Pace Continues https://t.co/AUY4eia9yj
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) September 4, 2022
Follow Chris Tomlinson on Twitter at @TomlinsonCJ or email at ctomlinson(at)breitbart.com.