Martin Wandera, the Director of the Labor Desk in the Gender Labor and Social Development Ministry, says well as the Ministry and Interpol try as much as they can to help people stuck abroad, many of them leave the country illegally.
Recently, the body of Christine Nambereke was returned to
Uganda from Oman where she had gone for casual work alias kyeyo as it is fondly
known among Ugandans.
The 31-year-old mother of seven traveled to Oman on September
18th through Busia border with the help of her husband, James Obed. The
couple agreed that Nambereke travels overseas for casual labor and earn some
money to support the family.
opted to connect through Kenya’s capital Nairobi to Oman because Ugandan
authorities ban labor export to Oman. As a result, many laborers traveling to
the country enter verbal contractors with Labor
One of the laborers told URN cover a two year period without
specifying the duty and responsibilities of the laborer.
"So, we end up
doing anything our bosses suggest for as long as they paid your travel
requirements from Uganda to their country,” one of the laborers said.
such conditions, most of the laborers get
frustrated much easily. Nambereke wanted to return home after serving for five
months but was blocked by her employers on ground that they had paid up to US$2,000
for her travel through a Ugandan Travel Company.
"She had to first finish her contract, which is 2 years
and later be cleared to travel back,” said a source. She sent emissaries to her relatives about her deteriorating
health status because of the huge work load resulting to back pain and the
disease, which eventually led to her death.
Nambereke’s family went through a hard time to repatriate her
remains from Oman. Uganda has no embassy in Oman as such those in need of
diplomatic services rely on Uganda’s embassy in Jordan and Saudi Arabia.
When a person dies abroad, close relatives inform local
authorities, which in turn consult with Uganda’s High Commission or embassy in
that particular country on how to proceed. The family is expected to
provide the names of the deceased, date of
birth, passport number, date of issuance and next of kin.
This is followed by registration of death in Uganda before
the relatives check the travel insurance policy of the deceased to establish whether
it caters for repatriation. Later a repatriation provider is
sought for on agreed costs and terms to return the body back home.
incidents, the International Police and the Ministries of Labor and Foreign Affairs
are expected to communicate with the host country to ensure the body returns.
However, Mariam Mwiza, an Oversees Rights Activist, says in
Uganda such government departments and agencies refuse to cooperate with
relatives of the deceased, which delays the repatriation of citizens and bodies
For instance, Mwiza says Nambereke decried inhuman treatment
while in Oman and requested the intervention of Ugandan authorities in vain.
//Cue in: “Omuntu eyaffa accident
Cue out: … weyayogelera nti mulwadde.”//
It takes close to a month to repatriate a body from a foreign
country. Ayub Sooma, the manager Entebbe Airport Security, says the huge number
of Ugandans traveling abroad for casual labor has introduced various challenges
because of various irregularities.
//Cue in: “one of the …
Cue out: … to the airport.”//
Luganda translation by Vianney Luggya
//Cue in: “Abantu abafuluma, kyeekyo …
Cue out: … gw’abo abagenda nebabakozesa.”//
Martin Wandera, the Director of the Labor Desk in the Gender
Labor and Social Development Ministry, says well as the Ministry and Interpol
try as much as they can to help people stuck abroad, many of them leave the
traveling for labor abroad must obtain a letter
from Interpol testifying to their good conduct, a second letter from the Gender
Labor and Social Development Minister and a VISA.
however, notes that even since government suspended
labor export to Oman, several Ugandans especially from Namisindwa District have
traveled there without clearance from Interpol and all agencies involved in
labor export, which leaves the country with limited innervations when they get
“We are currently handling cases of more than 20 girls who
left the country through the border to Oman. Well as we are struggling to
return them, we need to educate our people to stop traveling to countries that
have a record of harassing laborer,” said Moses Binoga, the Commissioner of police Anti-Human Trafficking Task Force.