KAMPALA – Barely 6 months after it entered the private labour recruitment market, Premier Recruitment Ltd, a member of the Ruparelia Group on Wednesday sent its first batch of 8 Ugandan ladies to Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, where they will work as domestic workers on a two-year contract.
The eight left Entebbe International Airport aboard Ethiopian Airlines on Tuesday and safely touched down in Jeddah on Wednesday at 02:50 am.
In Jeddah, they were received by partners and associates of Premier Recruitment, for onward placement at their respective places of work.
The ladies were seen off by Mr. Kanak Shah, the Premier Recruitment Ltd, General Manager and
Ms. Marley Ritah, the External Recruitment Operations Manager.
Ms. Marley advised the ladies to continue acting professionally and work hard. Mr. Kanak added that all company staff have been trained about the relevant labour laws, so as to be able to “deliver a professional recruitment service” but also keep everyone up-to-date and compliant with “any changes and updates within Employment Law, both here and abroad.”
Premier is licensed by Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development for Internal
Recruitment and is a member of the Uganda Association of External Recruitment Agencies.
According to Mr. Rajiv Ruparelia, CEO Premier Recruitment, the Uganda labour externalization industry is a vital source of livelihood for both the employees and their families and a major pillar of the economy that ought to be protected by all the stakeholders and bad apples weeded out.
“Uganda has a competitive advantage over a number of African countries because of our good English that we need to leverage just like our neighbours in Kenya. According to the World Bank and IMF Balance of Payments as well as Bank of Uganda data, personal remittances to Uganda have grown by 174.6% from $451.6 million (UGX1.66 trillion) in 2007 to $1.24billion (UGX4.5 trillion) in 2017, but our neighbours, Kenya raked in $1.962 billion (UGX7.2 trillion) in 2017 and $2.5 billion (UGX9.2 trillion) in 2018,” noted Rajiv, adding: “Diaspora remittances to Uganda are equivalent to 30% of Uganda’s traditional export earnings- $3.4bn (UGX12.5 trillion) in 2017 and $3.6bn (UGX13.2 trillion) in 2018 and almost 3 times bigger than coffee export receipts- $555.4m (UGX2 trillion) in 2017 and $436.4m (UGX1.6 trillion) in 2018.
Protecting and harnessing more value from this vital sector should be the responsibility of everyone.” Rajiv also said, beyond direct economic gains, labour externalization had other benefits such as skills transfer, mobilization of capital for investment and improving household incomes and standards of living for their dependents back home.
The Bank of Uganda, Personal Transfers Survey 2017 indicated that the Middle East was the second biggest source of remittances to Uganda (28.6%) after Africa (29%). Europe (20.7%) and North/South America (18.41%) were third and fourth respectively.
According to the Uganda Association for External Recruitment Agencies, there are 140,000 skilled and semi-skilled Ugandans working in the Middle East as blue-collar professionals as well as technicians, security personnel, porters, drivers, cleaners, housekeepers, catering and hospitality personnel.
The survey also showed that remittances benefitted up to 820,000 households and that $6 out of every $10 received, went to financing household expenses and education.