By Jehosophat Sembera
Youths under the Uganda Youth Network (UYONET) have called for the establishment of an employment directorate that would monitor the performance and working conditions of Ugandans abroad.
Youths believe that this would enable counter mistreatment and torture of Ugandans who have been recruited by employment agencies to work abroad, especially in the Middle East.
“The agreements signed between the government and employment agencies concentrates on availing employment, but not safety and security while at work,” said Chrispin Mutehimbwa, the coordinator Youth Budget Advocacy Alliance (YBAA).
Mutehimbwa said this yesterday during a media address at the UYONET headquarters in Ntinda, a Kampala suburb. Last year, the Central Government backed by Parliament banned the exportation of domestic workers to Arab countries following torture and mistreatment reports by Ugandans especially women.
Several women who had worked as casual labourers or domestic workers in Arab countries reported sexual harassments, beatings, torture, denied contact to relatives among other eveils by their employers. However, early this year, the Government through the Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development lifted the ban on exportation of domestic workers and casual labourers to Arab countries especially Saudi Arabia and Jordan.
This followed the signing of agreements between Uganda and Saudi Arabia and Jordan both in the Middle East which entailed ensuring security and safety of Ugandans seeking greener pastures.
“With the rapid increase of firms that recruit youths for foreign jobs especially in the Arab world, there is need for Government to seriously monitor, supervise and regulate this sector,” said Tadeo Kawuki, a youth with the Youth Budget Advocacy Alliance.
He added that this would enable government to establish if Ugandans are paid and working according to contract agreements signed with the recruitment agencies.