- Govt needs to do more to protect migrant workers in the Gulf region
Aug 10, 2017-A report released on Tuesday by a sub-committee of the International Relations and Labour Committee of Parliament has revealed the government’s complete disregard towards curbing human trafficking, painting an extremely disturbing picture. Based on a field study on the situation of Nepali workers in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates, the report reveals that the government has been sorely remiss in its duties of taking a strong and judicious stance to protect its nationals.
The committee’s report was released on the heels of an ambitious foreign policy work plan unveiled by Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Krishna Bahadur Mahara. The aim of the plan is to level up Nepal’s international stature. That this plan was revealed while the abuse and exploitation of migrant domestic workers is continuing apace and with complete indifference on the part of a state body is appalling.
While it would not be wise to impose a blanket ban on Nepali domestic help from taking up gainful employment opportunities abroad, the government has a number of other options to pursue in order to safeguard Nepali migrant workers. Measures should be adopted to enhance the migration experience, like the stronger
protection of migrant workers, safer working conditions, easier access to credit and better investment opportunities for remittances. Nepal’s medium to long term focus should be on industrialisation so as to be less dependent on remittances, which currently account for one-third of the country’s GDP. The plight of migrant workers is not something to be ignored, especially by those who are specifically charged with safeguarding the populace.
Published: 10-08-2017 07:45