Kenyan held in Saudi Arabian jail, family asks assistance to secure release


KIAMBU COUNTY: A family from Gitothua village in Ruiru is appealing the government intervene in helping bring back their daughter who is being held in a Saudi Arabian jail.

Jane Wangari said her daughter  Virginia Wanja, 24, who went to Saudi Arabia in June this year in search for greener pastures has being locked in the foreign country jail for the last two months.

The single mother of four said while her daughter was leaving the country, she was promised a job as a computer studies tutor in a college a thing that later turned out was a trick aimed at making her agree leave the country.

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She said upon reaching in the Middle East country, her daughter was told there was no such job and was given the option of being a house girl a thing she reluctantly agreed since she had no other option.

“When she was leaving the country, the agreement was she would be earning Sh24,000 a month. However, on reaching the foreign country, she was informed she would be getting Sh10,000 a month the money which she has never got even a penny to date,” said the mother tears rolling down her cheeks.

The mother said immediately after landing in Saudi Arabia, her daughter started to call her informing her of how she was being mistreated including being overworked and lack of enough food.

“She told me she was required to work for three different households daily without pay and food. She was also required not to sleep with the employer only permitting her two hours of sleep day,” she said.

Tired for being overworked without pay, going for days with no food and being mistreated, Wangari said her daughter decided to flee from her employer to a nearby police station with the aim of finding help on how she would come back home.

Her employer however allegedly made her be arrested for absconding duty and was subsequently taken to Tahrir prison where she is currently being held.

Mary Nzilili from Kilifi who managed to return from Saudi Arabia last week and who was being held in the same jail with Virginia said the mistreatment of domestic workers in the country is horrible and asked Kenyan women to desist from going to the country in search of jobs.

Ms Nzilili, who stayed in the country for six months, said she faced the same fate as Virginia after she decided to leave her job due to what she termed as unspeakable mistreatment.

“There are many Kenyan women who are facing mistreatment and going through a hand time in Saudi Arabia. I left 13 Kenyan women in the prison. The government should step in and rescue the innocent citizens who are rotting in the foreign jail,” said Nzilili.

The family is now calling on the Ministry of foreign affairs to intervene and ensure their daughter is freed and allowed to come back home.

Cases of Kenyans being mistreated with other being killed or maimed in the MiddleEast country have been on the increase.

Several human rights organisations have called on the government to ban Kenyans from going to the country in search for jobs.

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