August 4, 2011
Parliamentary Committee on Foreign Relations Adan Keynan Tuessday claimed the unbecoming behavior by a senior government official while on a tour of the United Arab Emirate has almost costing thousands of Kenyans their job.
Keynan said it will only take the President to intervene and save the over 40-thousand Kenyans working in the Emirates their jobs.
But Foreign Affairs Assistant Minister Richard Onyanka attributed the tribulation facing Kenyans in the Kingdom of Emir to the Ministry
of Labour which has made it almost impossible to register all organizations undertaking foreign job placements for Kenyans mostly to the Arab world.
Onyacha said it was unfortunate that most Kenyans just jump to a plane in the first instance when they are offered a job in a foreign country
without even informing the Kenyan authorities hence ending up being enslaved or being forced to prostitution.
He said in the UAE case high level talks have been taken place and even the president met the UAE foreign affairs minister in May this year to
bolster the Kenyan relations with the government of the Emir.
Onyanka said the mistreatment of the Prince by the immigration officials last year caused a diplomatic spat which led to Kenyans being slapped
with a degree requirement to enter the Emirates.
He added that such actions have made it difficult for Kenyans seeking Visas to work there.
He said after this punitive step, the government engaged the Emir government in talks and the requirement was dropped but now those seeking
jobs in UAE are being vetted on individual basis.
Onyanka told Parliament the Emir government was within its jurisdiction to admit and deny any entry but the Ministry was working on
modalities to sign a labour relations bilateral agreement that will cushion Kenyans from exploitation and ensure that there is data of Kenyans working abroad their safety.
The matter was however referred to the committee on foreign relations which is required to report back to Parliament in 90 days.
Onyonka was responding to a question by Gichugu MP Martha Karua who had sought to know how many Kenyans have been denied permits to work in Dubai.