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Shock As Labour Ministry Gives ‘One Special Company’ Approval To Export Workers

Labour export remains suspended in Uganda according to Government

Shock has engulfed Labour Externalization Sector after a fresh letter signed by Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development’s ‘Commissioner of Labour, Lawrence Egulu on behalf  Permanent Secretary approving a job order of Saliwa Recruitment Agency Uganda Limited leaked  even when export of workers  is still under temporary government suspension ever since COVID-19  lockdown.

The letter  dated 26th  October ,2020  to the Managing Director of Saliwa Recruitment Agency titled “Job Order Approval For Saliwa Recruitment Agency Uganda Limited “,  leaked  on social media on Wednesday morning indicating that it was responding to a submission dated 20th October 2020 requesting  clearance of  a job order to take  50 Ugandans to work as cleaners in United Arab Emirates under AL AQSA FACILITIES MANAGEMENT.

“Reference is made to your submission dated 20th October 2020 on the above subject and accompanying details,” the letter reads, adding: “This request has been evaluated and found to meet the requirements of the pertinent provisions of the Employment (Recruitment of Ugandan Migrant Workers Abroad) Regulation, 2005 and Guideline 13.0 of the Guidelines on the Recruitment and Placement of Uganda Migrant Workers Abroad, 2015.”

It continues that  “The purpose of this letter, therefore, is to inform you that the (50) employment opportunities offered by AL AQSA FACILITIES MANAGEMENT in United Arab Emirates have been posted and are advertised on our website”.

The same letter signed by Lawrence Egulu on behalf of Permanent Secretary thus concludes “ Your Company is urged to continue following the provisions of the Regulations and Guidelines throughout the recruitment and deployment process of this category of Ugandan migrant workers”.

Players in the labour externalization sector have questioned the ownership of this ‘special company’, claiming that it is owned by some top government officials including Labour Ministry staff.

A copy of the letter

Sources add that ever since the re-opening of the airport, the company in question has been taking Ugandans out of the country to different countries in the Middle East yet the entire industry remains closed.

The source added that the 33 girls that were recently intercepted at the airport being sneaked out of the country to UAE belonged to Saliwa Recruitment Agency.

The Minister’s letter that suspended external employment services effective 28th March 2020

It should be remembered that recently before Labor recruitment agencies closed shop,there had been forces of push and pull between the licensed recruitment agencies and ministry of Labour who is their regulator , with agencies accusing the ministry of deliberate continuous closure of labour externalization even after government opened airport and borders.

Labour exporting companies say this has caused them huge losses and increased human trafficking in the country.

This followed Ministry’s communication in a press release that they (MOGLSD) were reviewing the current suspension of externalization of labour.

“Accordingly, the Minister of Gender, labour& Social Development has written to the Minister of Health seeking advice on the feasibility of reopening externalization of labour,” the release read, adding: “This should of course be subject to fulfillment of COVID-19 Standard Operating Procedures put in place by Government of Uganda and other authorities in the respective destination countries:

The Minister of Labor Gender and Social Development Frank Tumwebaze suspended operations of Labor externalization in late March as the country was getting into COVID-19 induced lockdown and it’s estimated that so far, over 35,000 Ugandans have lost job opportunities in the last seven months of continuous closure of the sector.

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