Kenya and Saudi Arabia join hands to streamline migrant workers' issues


CS Labor Florence Bore with Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Human Resource and Social Development Eng. Ahmed bin Sulaiman Al Rajh. [Picture, Ministry of Labor]

The prolonged stifle between Kenya and Saudi Arabia on matters of migrant workers tops the agenda in a week-long tour by Cabinet Secretary for Labor and Social Protection Florence Bore.

The CS, who is in Saudi Arabia yesterday met with the Coordination Council for Recruitment Companies (CCRC) where several issues revolving around migrant workers were discussed at length. Also present at the meeting was the Minister of Human Resource and Social Development Eng. Ahmed bin Sulaiman Al Rajh.

Among the key issues discussed included; confiscation of travel documents by some agencies, inadequate response to distress cases and some Saudi Arabia agencies that operate in Kenya using proxies.

“The two countries agreed on putting in place mechanisms for regular consultations and exchange of views on emerging issues through physical meetings and also leveraging on virtual communication platforms,” a statement from the ministry read.

To avert the escalating cases of mistreatment of Kenyans working in Middle East countries, Kenya and Saudi Arabia also agreed on exploring the possibility of facilitating professional and other skilled cadres to access employment opportunities.

According to statistics from the Labor ministry, more than 80,000 domestic workers were able to secure employment in Saudi Arabia in 2022 alone, making it a key labor migration destination.

In November 2022, Senate passed a motion by Nominated Senator Veronica Nduati recommending that the Ministry of Labour amends the national labour migration regulatory framework policy to address labour exportation management.