Mubenga protesters demand G4S exclusion from government contracts
Demonstrations marking second anniversary of death of Jimmy Mubenga call for G4S to be excluded from government contracts
* Campaigners demand that G4S and the three guards accused of Mubenga's death are held responsible and claim the CPS decision not to charge them is 'political'. .
Campaigners today held demonstrations in London to mark the two-year anniversary of the death of Jimmy Mubenga, the 46-year-old Angolan migrant who died in 2010 after being 'restrained' by G4S security guards during his forcible deportation to Angola on a British Airways flight. 
More than 40 attended demonstrations outside the offices of the CPS and G4S plc to demand that G4S and the three guards concerned are held responsible for what they call “a crime.” They will be demanding “justice for Mubenga and his family, and that no one should face such a fate in the future.”
G4S, which made the headlines over its failure to meet its contract to provide security at the Oylmpics, is contracted to operate prisons, asylum housing and detention centres and whole departments of the Lincolnshire policy force. The company looks set to be awarded further contracts in the near future despite its track record of mistreatment and exploitation of those put under its care.
A record 773 complaints were made against G4S when over its operation of migrant detention centres. G4S has also been criticised for its role in the privatisation of public services and the mistreatment and exploitation of those put under its care. Palestinian organisations have condemned the company for its provision of equipment and services to Israeli prisons at which Palestinian political prisoners are held in violation of the Geneva conventions and subjected to mistreatment and torture.
“It is truly terrifying that a company that has shown such disregard for human rights is being awarded control of public services. As the home affairs select committee has suggested, G4S should be placed on a blacklist of companies not eligible to bid on public contracts,” said a spokesperson for the Stop G4S campaign.
Despite several eye witnesses confirming that “excessive force” was used by the three G4S guards, allegedly leading to Mubenga's suffocation and subsequent death, and that the Home Office and G4S' initial accounts of what happened on board the flight were “false”, the Crown Prosecution Service decided in July this year that neither G4S nor the guards concerned will face manslaughter charges due to “conflicting witness accounts.” 
Mubenga's family, his wife and five children, were said to be “distraught” by the decision. The former chief inspector of prisons Lord Ramsbotham condemned the decision as “perverse”. 
Campaigners claim the CPS decision was “political” and will “serve as a licence for private 'detainee escorts' to kill.”
Despite calls for a public inquest, Mubenga's case is not the first time that G4S has been accused of causing the death of deportees through the use of “dangerous” restraint techniques. The company's management was reportedly warned by the Home Office in 2006 over using dangerous restraint techniques, of the type that resulted in Mubenga's death. 
In the weeks that followed Mubenga's death, four G4S employees secretly submitted a testimony to the Home Affairs Select Committee looking into the case, detailing “how some G4S guards developed a dangerous technique for restraining deportees by bending them in aircraft seats.”
According to the whistleblowers, G4S managers were repeatedly alerted that “disruptive deportees” were being “forced into submission” with their heads placed between their legs. The technique, known among G4S guards as “carpet karaoke”, is strictly prohibited because it can result in a form of suffocation known as positional asphyxia, skull fractures and blindness.
Unlike the CPS, the Select Committee's report found evidence of “inappropriate use of physical restraint, and the possible use of unauthorised and potentially dangerous restraint techniques.” 
Following Mubenga's death, G4S lost the detainee escorts contract with the UK Border Agency to Reliance. The three security guards implicated in the case were re-employed by the new contractor but it is not known whether they still work for the company. Both G4S and Reliance have refused to “comment on individual staff members.”
The protests have been called by the Stop G4S coalition, No Borders London and the Stop Deportation network. Supporting groups include Corporate Watch, the National Coalition of Anti-Deportation Campaigns, South Yorkshire Migration and Asylum Action Group, Redbridge Equalities & Community Council, among others.
For further information and questions, please contact:
Tel: +44 7500 877 276
 The public demonstration outside the offices of the Crown Prosecution Service (Rose Court, 2 Southwark Bridge, London, SE1 9HS) took place from 11am to 1pm. The demonstration at the G4S UK & Ireland head office (105 Victoria Street, London, SW1E 6QT) is took place from 2 to 4pm.
 The callout can be found at http://london.noborders.org.uk/node/615.
 For more on G4S’ track record of abuse, see http://www.corporatewatch.org/?lid=4343 and http://www.indymedia.org.uk/media/2012/06/496831.pdf
For more details on G4S' activities in Israel and Palestine, see http://electronicintifada.net/blogs/adri-nieuwhof/london-olympics-security-firm-g4s-helps-israel-abuse-palestinian-childrenblog comments powered by Disqus