Calls To Ban Kenyans Travelling To Saudi Uncalled For, Recruitment Agencies Say

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The Kenya Association of Private Recruitment Agencies has asked those calling for Kenyans to be banned from travelling to the Gulf especially Saudi Arabia to stop the calls.

Addressing the media on Wednesday, the Association led by Julie Kabogo say that many who travel to Saudi Arabia using agencies are safe as they are accounted for, despite a few teething problems that the government can address.

They warned that the moment the government heeded to the calls and banned Kenyans from travelling to Saudi, that will be detrimental as it will make the lives of the Kenyan workforce there who they estimated to be half a million to be in danger.

The Association appealed to the government not only to open more Consulates in the Gulf so as to help the current Kenyan Embassy that is in Saudi Arabia.

‘The Gulf is very big. A single Embassy cannot manage to handle a few cases that emanate from there and that is the reason we are appealing to the government to open more Consulates in different parts of that region to deal with the cases,’ they said.

They however stated that the few cases that come from Saudi Arabia of ladies being mistreated are due to language barrier and of ladies who flee their work locations in the name of looking for greener pastures.

‘Yes, we can’t deny there are cases of women who get mistreated but have you ever asked yourselves why it is only women who are and not men? We have worked for several years in Saudi Arabia and we can tell you that some of our ladies when they arrive there, they are enticed by other women who lie to them that they will get more money away from their employers and that is when the problems begin. How will you account for someone who fled from employers without their documents and decided to go get a live out there?’ They posed.

They asked the government to take someone who has been in the Gulf and understands what happens there to be the Kenyan Ambassador as one who has been there knows what transpires and that will help.

Violet Karanu who runs Jay-horizon agency in Nairobi echoed the same sentiments. She asked anyone who intends to fly to Saudi Arabia to look for a job to first ensure that she or he deals with a registerd agency first. Seconsly, she asked relatives of any person who wishes to travel to Saudi to ensure they have the person’s copies of travel documents, copy of the contract, contacts of the agency and many others just in case the worst happened and they needed help.

However, Bunge La Mwananchi who stormed and disrupted the meeting that was taking place at Jevanjee Gardens in Nairobi claimed that the Association was lying to Kenyans and it was to blame for the many cases emanating from Saudi Arabia as they were the persons ferrying Kenyans there.

Led by its Deputy President Rotich Mibei and Shitandi Joseph, Bunge la Mwananchi threatened to stage a protest of one million people to Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, JKIA, to compel airlines to stop flying Kenyans to Saudi Arabia.

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