A former Facebook employee, who hails from South Africa and was allegedly fired after questioning the working conditions in Nairobi has threatened to file a lawsuit against the tech giant for wrongful termination.

Former Facebook content moderator, Daniel Motaung, alleged he lost his job for attempting to form a trade union with 100 co-workers at the tech giant’s Nairobi office to protest alleged exploitative working conditions.

Motaung’s lawyers wrote a demand letter to Facebook’s parent firm Meta and Ethical Artificial Intelligence (AI) company Sama, which is based in San Francisco and provided content moderation services for Facebook in Nairobi.

The letter warns the two firms of a pending lawsuit for the violation of the rights of Kenyan and international employees, arguing that they had constitutional rights to form a union.

“Content moderators like Daniel are the most important and least-discussed aspect of Facebook’s global operations. Their job is to sift through the social media posts of Facebook’s nearly three billion monthly users and remove posts that violate its rules – such as graphic violence, hate, and misinformation,” stated the letter.

The former moderator says the nature of their work at the Nairobi office puts them at risk of suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), and that had not been looked into.

The letter went on, “Facebook subcontracts most of this work to companies like Sama – a practice that keeps Facebook’s profit margins high but at the cost of thousands of moderators’ health – and the safety of Facebook worldwide. Sama moderators report ongoing violations, including conditions which are unsafe, degrading, and pose a risk of PTSD.”

According to the lawyers, Motaung believes Sama took part in an illegal action against formation of their union, including flying in a senior executive from the US to quash it.

The former content moderator has given the company established by Mark Zuckerberg a 21-day ultimatum to tackle 12 demands of fair treatment or they face them in court.

Motaung is one of the key faces in the latest scandal rocking social media giant Facebook and its moderation policies.

A probe by Time magazine revealed that Sama, Facebook’s largest moderating outsourcing firm, was underpaying employees for work that has caused some of them severe PTSD.