Using false documents is the root cause of suffering to many Ugandans working in the Arab World.
Enid Nambuya, Executive Director Uganda Association of External Recruitment Agency (UAREA), an umbrella organisation for registered export labour companies said Ugandan workers are responsible for their suffering in the Arab world.
Nambuya says Ugandans use false documents to get to these middle east countries for work and when they face torture, they find no one to render them assistance.
Many Ugandans have flown to middle east countries in search for employment opportunities and many have ended up being victims of torture, exploitation and many have lost lives.
These include; Qutar, Omar, Jordan, United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia.
In a media briefing during the Prevention of Trafficking in person workshop held in Kampala on Thursday 20, 2019, Nambuya said that many Ugandan workers who get to these countries use false documents and when they face harassment and exploitation no one gets to their rescue.
Because of frustration at home, women welcome any form of work available abroad but they are not proud of it. They, therefore, use falsified documents so their people back home don’t know the kind of jobs they are going to do in the Middle East. They want to appear as though they are doing the best jobs in the world but if problems come, it is difficult to help them.Nambuya stated
Nambuya says many Ugandans travelling to Saudi Arabia for work give wrong contact address of their next of kin and it becomes hard to get to them when they encounter difficulties at their work place.
Nambuya relatedly said that a section of Ugandan workers prefers private agents to get to these countries instead of going through authorised agencies and many of them end up fooled.
They trust individuals more than they do with licensed companies because with the former, it is easy to be taken to Middle East but on a number of occasions the consequences are dire.
Additionally, Nambuya said that many of them who go through private agents are taken as tourists and after reaching their destination, they then begin to process their work permit.
According to Nambuya it’s the reason why most of them end up tortured because the employers know they have no one to rescue them.
In case of problems, those who went with individuals end up not being helped because the individuals are nowhere to be seen.
She continues to state that many Ugandans working in the Arab World approached her desk wishing to end their contracts before their expiry date but are limited by the clauses that feature on their contract document.
Nambuya says the contract requires an individual to give a notice of three months ahead if at all he/she wishes to terminate the contract which most of them have failed to do.
When they feel being exploited or cannot continue working, they demand to leave their places of work but when the employers demand for the three months in lieu without having money, they tend to make alarm.Nambuya said
Moses Binoga, Commissioner in charge of human trafficking in the ministry of Internal Affairs appealed to all Ugandans to go through licenced agencies in case they want to work outside Uganda.
Binoga said 140,000 plus Uganda nationals are working in the Arab world.
Those going out should endeavour to get the telephone contacts of their recruitment companies, the ministry of labour officials or any other person working with the enforcement agency for use in reporting in case of demanding situations.
Continuing Binoga added that;
All those going to Middle East through licensed companies should see they exit the country through Entebbe airport and in an open way without having to conceal their visa and Job contract papers.