At least 50 Ugandans working as casual labourers have died in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and neighboring countries of Oman, Bahrain and Kuwait since this year-2017 began.
A report from UAE Mission, says that the major cause of these Ugandan deaths has been attributed to suicide, claiming 35 lives out of the registered 48 deaths. These deaths are recorded between January and August this year. However, report show that there are other undocumented death of Ugandans working in these Arab countries.
These suicide deaths have been attributed to frustrating and unbearable working conditions in these Arab countries where Ugandans have been recruited to work as casual labourers. The report shows that others Ugandans have died of mysterious accidents, cardiac arrest, murder, drowning, and other diseases like Meningitis, HIV and liver failure.
While addressing a press conference on Tuesday, Ngora County MP David Abala confirmed that they unearthed these deaths during their recent visit to Dubai and Abu Dhabi as members sitting on committee on Gender, Labour and Social Development and Committee on Foreign Affairs. He revealed that these deaths are from countries which do not have bilateral agreements with Uganda to export human labour.
“We are asking government why they are still exporting labour to these countries that do not have bilateral agreements with Uganda. Can you imagine that bodies of some of these young girls and boys whose parents could not be traced, would be dumped in the desert,” Abala said.
Western Youth MP Mwine Mpaka said that government has only signed bilateral agreements with two countries; Saudi Arabia and Jordan but continues to export labour to other Arab countries which have victimized Ugandan girls and boys.
“We are not against labour exportation, but we are against exporting labour to countries without bilateral agreements because statistics show that our Ugandans are dying or committing suicide from these countries,” Mwine said, adding that there is need for government to put up a fund to set up a home for rehabilitation of these traumatized Ugandan labourers.
“If ministry of Gender does not do something then we are going to move a motion to ban exportation of human labour to all these countries,” he said.
Uganda Association of External Recruitment Agencies (UAERA) revealed that up to 65,000 Ugandans are doing odd jobs in the Middle East. Among those recruited include maids, guards, drivers, waiters/waitress and others.
FULL OF UGANDANS WHO HAVE DIED IN UAE
Mike Kizito Musoke
Magidu Bright Asaba