The atrocities by the militant group Boko Haram have included bombings, kidnappings and assassinations. They have targeted politicians and religious leaders, as well as women and children. Now they have abducted more than 100 schoolgirls in the town of Chibok in northeastern Nigeria.
The group seeks to impose a stricter enforcement of Sharia law across Africa's most populous nation, and their name literally means, “Western education is sin.” Their insurgency is a growing challenge not only for residents in Africa’s most populous country, but also for Westerners doing business there.
In this case, many American organizations, including an NGO or charity, could be the ones providing pro bono employees or subcontracted parties to teach at the Nigerian Girls School. Such organizations operating in these types of hostile environments need to understand their risks, mitigate those risks and have specialized insurance.
To mitigate such a disaster, these organizations should have access to a Risk Register report, which would include risk probability, impact, counter-measures, etc. This report is the basis for subsequent security mitigation measures.
They could also benefit from contractual advice on agreements with pro bono employees, including pre-trip dos and don’ts (with countersigned agreements between Employee and Employer on the risks associated with the project) and protection measures understood by all parties.
They should have adequate insurance coverage in the form of Combined Liability indemnity including Employer’s Liability that protects all potential judgment and defense costs incurred in courts. This would provide protection against claims made by the families of abducted U.S. employees, and it’s imperative there are no country/political violence exclusions.
Arrangements should also be made for Accidental Death & Disablement Insurance including Medical Evacuation and Repatriation services, Kidnap & Ransom Insurance including Response services that are unlimited following a Kidnap or Extortion event.
Without such insurance protection and risk mitigation, not only are employees at greater risk, but their employers may have to bear all the costs, undergo public scrutiny and suffer a judgment that it had failed in its duty to care for its employees.