Somalia’s Federal government announced Tuesday registration of domestic workers that will be sent to Saudi Arabia to meet the Kingdom’s labour requirement, an official has said.
Deputy Minister of Labour and Social Affairs, Osman Libah Ibrahim said that 2000 workers will be sent to the Kingdom soon as part of the agreement between Somalia and Saudi Arabia.
The workforce would include maids, nurses and drivers.
‘’From today, we are ready to receive applications from those interested to work in Saudi Arabia. The first batch will be consisted of 2000 men and women.’’
Poverty and inadequate numbers of jobs in the country are among factors which have forced hundred thousands of Somali men and women to work in the Kingdom. They often complain of being made to work long hours, unpaid wages and in some cases grave physical abuse.
Last year, Somalia President Hassan Sheikh Mohamoud and Saudi authorities signed an agreement for hiring 50,000 Somali workers, most of them housemaids. The move was widely criticized by the entire Somali population due to the abuse of human rights in the Kingdom.
In a move to defend the agreement, Mr Mohamoud said that his government will take necessary measures to safeguard the workers’ rights.
Critics of the Federal government’s policy on sending workers to Saudi Arabia say they are more interested in the benefits part of the agreement rather than the consequences.