Kenya allocates Ksh70m to build safe houses for abused Kenyans in Saudi Arabia
The government has allocated Ksh70 million towards the construction of safe houses for Kenyan citizens who have been abused while working in the Gulf nation of Saudi Arabia.
In a bid to safeguard Kenyan migrant workers in the Middle East, Labour Cabinet Secretary Simon Chelugui on Tuesday, June 28, 2022, stated that the government will build safe houses for Kenyans in those countries.
Speaking during the National Job Fair in Mombasa, the CS stated that the government has kicked of the tracing of Kenyans who have been abused while working abroad and offering them rehabilitation.
CS Chelugui further stated that the government has launched a crackdown on illegal immigrant job agencies.
He assured that the government will ensure that all recruitment agencies are registered with the National Employment Authority (NEA) before they can export labour abroad.
“We will enforce that requirement that all private recruiters register with NEA be allowed to recruit any Kenyan to work abroad. As a quick measure to save those suffering abroad and more so in Saudi Arabia, we shall open safe homes to protect those being mistreated as we plan for their repatriation,” said Chelugui.
The CS also noted that the Coast region is the most notorious for unregistered recruitment agencies, adding that the companies also recruit youths into terror groups.
“Some job placement companies have taken advantage of policy gaps to exploit Kenyans but now with the new policies, they will have to comply or else they will close their shops,” CS Chelugui said.
Over the recent years, several Kenyans have lost their lives while working in the Middle East. Videos and images have been shared online, showing women in distress, crowded in rooms, while others lay sick, on the brink of death.
CS Chelugui noted that close to 100 Kenyans working in Saudi Arabia have died over the last two years.
“In the last two years, we have registered 97 cases of Kenyans who have died while working abroad but we want to end it,” said the CS.
The CS had previously revealed that there are about 97,000 Kenyans living and working in Saudi Arabia.