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Gov’t signs MoU with UAE of labour exportation

By Jeff Andrew Lule

Added 12th July 2019 05:33 PM

The five-year agreement aims at curbing the rampant illegal migration of Ugandans by illegal dealers.

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The Uganda Media Centre executive director Ofwono Opondo (left) and the Minister of Gender, Labour and Social Development Janat Mukwaya addressing the press at the Uganda Media Centre offices in Kampala on the July 12, 2019. Photo by Jimmy Outa

The five-year agreement aims at curbing the rampant illegal migration of Ugandans by illegal dealers.

KAMPALA - The Government of Uganda has finally signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to streamline labour migration.

The five-year agreement aims at curbing the rampant illegal migration of Ugandans by illegal dealers.

Addressing journalists at the Uganda Media Centre in Kampala Friday, the minister of Gender Labour and Social Development (MGLSD), Janat Mukwaya said this is aimed at formalizing labour exportation of Ugandans to the UAE.

The MoU was signed on June 26, 2019, between MGSLD and the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratization in the UAE, represented by Minister Nasser bin Thani Al Hamli.

The new agreement comes with stringent measures, to ensure that Ugandans going to in the UAE go through the recommended channels.

“This is going to help us to deal with illegal employment companies because; under this MoU, more organized and safe employment shall be created,” she noted.

Mukwaya said unlike before, under the new agreement, the terms and conditions of employment of Ugandan workers in the UAE shall be defined by an individual employment contract between the worker and the employer.

“An offer that is mirrored on the contract will be signed by both parties prior to the worker’s departure from Uganda. The written text of the employment offer shall be delivered to the prospective worker in English and Arabic and explained by the Uganda recruitment agency to the recipient where it is unclear,” he added.

She said all recruitment; hiring and replacement activities of workers in both countries shall this time round be permitted only under recruitment companies licenses by both companies.

Most importantly, the agreement stipulates that upon arrival of the worker in UAE, he/she (they) will sign an employment contract that will clearly state the rights and obligations of the worker and employer in conformity with the labour laws of UAE, and the agreement will be duly filed with the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratization in the UAE to constitute the sole binding contract document for the purpose of enforcement in UAE.

“These terms and conditions of employment, as stated in the contract, shall not vary from those contained in the employment offer except for alterations that are favourable to the worker,” Mukwaya noted.

The MoU which is to be effected in three months’ time, also targets to strengthen cooperation by providing a legal framework for the employment of manpower from Uganda in the UAE, establish a mechanism to discuss views on labour related problems and to resolve any outstanding issues relating to workers and their rights, creating mutual understanding between the two governments to protect all workers, with special consideration of the female migrant workers and facilitating healthy cooperation and exchange of information on best practices between the two states on labour migration.

Mukwaya said they are going to set up a joint committee in three months as the agreement becomes operational to make periodic reviews, assessment, and monitoring of the implementation of the various provisions of the MoU. The team will be composed of officials ministries of GLSD, Foreign Affairs, Justice, Internal Affairs and Security. 

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