Ethiopia to send 500,000 female citizens to Arab countries for employment: Report

Ethiopia plans to send 500,000 female citizens to Arab countries especially Saudi Arabia for employment, the Addis Ababa based online media outlet Addis Maleda reported earlier this week. 

Addis Maleda reported “trainings” are being provided to adult females in all zones of the northern Amhara region to prepare them for life as migrant laborers.

The training reportedly is specifically related to activities the women are expected to undertake in Arab countries households. 

Addis Maleda further reported the first flight of the prospective Ethiopian women domestic workers is expected to commence on April 4.

On Friday evening, another online media outlet the US based Ethio360 reported female residents of Amhara region are being recruited by authorities to work in Saudi Arabia with the promise that their foreign currency salaries will be exchanged on the “black market” back home. 

The Ethiopian government has reportedly promised the prospective domestic workers that their salaries which will be sent to Ethiopian bank accounts rather than be given to them directly will be deposited in “black market” rate birr deposits.

Ethio360, however reports the Ethiopian government has already reneged on the “black market” foreign currency exchange promises and has started taking the difference between the black market and official rate money into its pocket. 

The US based online media outlet also reported the Ethiopian government plans to get commission from the Saudi government for each female domestic helper it sends to the middle eastern country.

Separately, sources have confirmed the Ethiopian government has already made preparations to have the domestic helpers’ salaries be sent on domestic bank accounts, breaking the practice of domestic workers receiving their salaries in the countries they work in.

The Ethiopian laborers migration plan to Saudi Arabia comes despite reports of Ethiopian nationals routinely suffering physical and sexual abuses by their employers and Saudi authorities.  

The Saudi government also routinely imprisons Ethiopian migrants in inhumane detention facilities and later deports the surviving destitute migrants back to Ethiopia.

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