Alfred Mutua: How I will solve Kenyan migrant workers' suffering in Saudi Arabia

Foreign and Diaspora Affairs CS Dr. Alfred Mutua met top government officials in Saudi Arabia. [Source: Alfred Mutua, Twitter]

Foreign and Diaspora Affairs CS Dr. Alfred Mutua has highlighted the challenges facing Kenyans working and living in Saudi Arabia.

He has also outlined some of the things he plans to action so as to solve Kenyans' suffering while working in the Arab nation.

Mutua pronounced himself on the issue following his two-day trip to Saudi Arabia, where he met and held talks with high-ranking officials.

After his trip, CS Mutua shared his thoughts through his official Twitter page on Thursday, November 1 evening.

In a series of Tweets, Mutua says that the main issues affecting the export of labor to Saudi Arabia are corruption, the existence of cartels, and illegal travel agents in the sector.

He argues that the challenges most Kenyan workers face in Saudi Arabia originate from here.

“It is clear that the problems facing some of our people start back home in Kenya. The system is flawed and corrupt and unless it’s fixed, nothing will change. There is massive corruption in the way Kenyans are prepared before they leave to be domestic workers in Saudi Arabia and follow up of Kenyans when they arrive,” Mutua’s statement reads in part.

“We have to break the cartels and streamline the agencies, some of which are owned by prominent Kenyans. We have agreed to work on a modality to get Kenyan Labour agencies to have offices in Saudi Arabia to deal with issues concerning their clients,”

In addition, the newly appointed cabinet secretary has pledged to work in collaboration with Saudi Arabian government to ensure the well-being of Kenyans working in the Arab nation.

“The rights of all workers, as enshrined by the laws of Saudi Arabia and Kenya will be enforced. We have also agreed to ensure compliance by agents and others when it comes to the provision of healthcare to Kenyans, including those who are in the country illegally,”

The former Machakos Governor has also requested the Saudi Arabian government to pardon Kenyans who reside in their borders illegally.

“The Kenyan Government is also dispatching additional staff to the Riyadh Embassy to assist in the process of legalizing Kenyans who are out of status and processing traveling documents and other necessary work,” he said.

Mutua flew to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in a bid to address the plight of mistreated Kenyan migrant workers in the Gulf State.

During his vetting in parliament, he had committed to prioritising the issue.

Days later, Mutua would hold talks with representatives of employment agents who recruit Kenyans for jobs in Saudi Arabia.