KCTA supports Balala on requirement to vet expatriates in tourism and hospitality industry

Tourism Cabinet Secretary Najib Balala.
The Kenya Coast Tourist Association (KCTA) has supported the directive by the government to have all expatriates seeking to work in the country's hospitality industry.

In a statement, KCTA chairman, Mr Victor Shitakah said that Kenya has adequate pool of experts in the hospitality and should not be flooded with experts whose jobs can be well handled by locals.

'' We have one of the best trained labour manpower in the tourism sector and our workers have been targetted by international hotel chains, airlines and even NGOs. While there are instances that very critical staff are missing from our midst, then expatriates can be sought,'' Shitakah, who is also Regional Manager for Pride Inn Group of Hotels (Coast) said.

He added that hired expatriates should be encouraged to come and work for specified durations, pass on their knowledge and leave the scene for local experts.

Tourism Cabinet Secretary Najib Balala had announced last week the formation of an 11-man committee chaired by Tourism Principal Secretary, Mr Joe Okudo will vet and recommend the said expatriates for a period that is not specified.

Balala had insisted any jobs in the hospitality industry taken up by locals must be those that cannot be filled by locals.

'' With respect to any vacancy other than those reserved for an investor in the tourism and hospitality sector, to protect the investors interest, ensure that employees have made all reasonable efforts to employ Kenyan in the first place,'' her said in an earlier interview.

Balala directed that hotels submit current returns of foreigners to the team known as Work Permit Vetting Committee for Tourism and Hospitality Sector.

The committee will draw its membership from the giant Kenya Association of Hotelkeepers and Caterers (KAHC), Immigration Department, Tourism Fund (TF) Kenya Association of Tour Operators (Kato) and the Tourism Ministry respectively.

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KCTAKenya Coast Tourist AssociationNajib BalalaTourism