The sad stories of Kenyans who are dying in the Middle East have become a daily outcry, with the Kenyan government doing so little to mitigate the ordeal.
Lucy Wanja, 35, secured a job in Saudi Arabia only to die 10 days after.
She secured a cleaning job in September this year but returned while in a casket.
Reports indicate that the September stay in Arabia was her second attempt after the first one failed.
In 2018, Wanja applied via a local labour exporting agency to travel to Saudi Arabia to look for a job but it hit a bottom rock when the agent disappeared with her Ksh150,000.
The hopeful Wanja did not give up only to give it a second trial which turned up successful, yet tragic.
“She was among 50 girls who had been conned by an agent in 2018. Their air tickets were ready but when they reached Moi International Airport, they were told the tickets had been booked but not paid for. The agent vanished and closed down his office and we are still looking for him,” said the deceased’s sister, Ms Naomi Willy as reported by Nation Africa.
Her 67-year-old mother is now demanding justice, calling on the Kenyan government to help unravel the cause of her daughter’s death.
Wanja’s case adds on top of 89 cases of Kenyans who have returned home dead between 2019 and 2021.
The government has been negligent to try and implement laws that would see Kenyans who work abroad, especially in the Middle East are well-protected.
The National Assembly Committee on Labour and Social Welfare chaired by Wachira Kabinga is currently working on recommendations of laws that will safeguard Kenyans’ wellbeing in the Middle East without undergoing torture.
“Our girls cannot continue to be enslaved and to suffer in the Middle East, with some being forced to become sex slaves. We met a Kenyan who has been hospitalised for six years. This is a serious issue,” said Kabinga.
According to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, many Kenyans who work in the Middle East are security guards, drivers, masons and cleaners.
In Saudi Arabia, there are 120,000 Kenyans, United Arab Emirates (53,000), Qatar (35,000). In Bahrain, there are 7,000, Oman 4,900, Kuwait 1,500 and Lebanon 900.
Source; Nation Africa.