The British security multinational G4S, which branded itself a shambles over the Olympics staffing crisis, today (4 January) faces more humiliation amid its nomination for a wooden spoon as the world’s most shameful firm over the past year.
The UK charity War on Want proposed that G4S should win the People’s Award among the Public Eye prizes set for announcement to coincide with the World Economic Forum in the Swiss resort of Davos on 24 January.
Now a jury of business ethics specialists has studied reports on 20 companies and included G4S on the seven-strong shortlist for the prize, given by the campaigning organisations Greenpeace and the Berne Declaration.
The charity accuses G4S of complicity in Israel’s illegal occupation of Palestine by supplying its security equipment and services for use at checkpoints and West Bank settlements, as well as helping to maintain Israel’s prison system.
War on Want also cites the company’s direct role in running Britain’s immigrant detention centres and Home Office deportations.
This includes Jimmy Mubenga’s death in October 2010 after three G4S guards proceeded with his forcible deportation to Angola.
The Guardian reported staff had warned G4S potentially lethal force was being used against deportees. But last July the Crown Prosecution Service decided not to charge the company or former employees, due to insufficient evidence.
Mubenga’s widow, Makenda Adrienne Kambana, said: “We can’t understand why the officers and G4S are not answerable to the law as we or any other member of the public would be.”
War on Want campaigner Rafeef Ziadah said: “G4S is the world’s largest private military and security company. It is a key player in the dangerous trend towards privatisation of war and outsourcing of state functions to corporations. G4S is profiting from conflict and political instability at the expense of security and human rights across the world. It is time to intensify pressure on G4S by voting for the multinational as the worst corporation of 2012.”
War on Want is urging people to support its nomination at http://www.publiceye.ch/en/vote/ Voting ends at noon on 23 January.