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Gov’t okays labour export operations in more eased COVID-19 measures

The Government through the Gender, Labor and Social Development ministry has lifted a restrictions on the labour export business operations to allow Ugandans seek jobs abroad again especially in The Middle East.

Minister Frank Tumwebaze on Tuesday said his ministry has lifted the ban and noted they will issue guidelines.

“This is to inform all licensed companies involved in the sourcing of external employment for Ugandan migrant workers, that following the relaxing of a number of COVID lock down measures by Ministry of Health and resumption of air travel, Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development will be lifting the ban on labour export by licenced companies in accordance with the existing mandatory COVID SOPs for all travellers,” Minister Tumwebaze noted.

He said Gender PS will issue a detailed statement on this.

Last March, the government suspended the externalisation of labour to countries such as the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Jordan, Somalia, Kuwait, Bahrain, Afghanistan, and Iraq to curb the spread of COVID-19.

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Baker Akantabira, the chairperson of the Uganda Association of External Recruitment Agencies (UAERA), an umbrella body that brings together all labour externalisation companies in Uganda said the government’s reluctance to re-open the sector amidst tight regulations had crippled their operations.

Uganda currently has 187 recruitment firms licenced by the labour ministry


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