Monday, March 11, 2013

Saudi Gazette Claims Ethiopian illegal workers become the greatest danger to Saudi Arabia society

Suddenly it is the Ethiopians!


Last updated: Wednesday, March 06, 2013 11:12 AM

Khalaf Al-Harbi

Suddenly the Ethiopians have become the greatest danger to our society!

The issue of the illegal foreigners has been narrowed down to a single nationality. Nobody asked how the Ethiopians were able to enter our country in such large numbers. Nobody questioned how they were able to stay all these long years in the bottom of the valleys and the backstreets of major towns and cities without being noticed.

Furthermore, overstayers from various nationalities are seen in broad daylight along intersections of major streets and roads in the main cities without any action to curb this phenomenon.

We are, however, very fond of the following scenario: We become angry all of a sudden and then become quiet and pacified. The conditions have remained the same for many years with no one enlightening us with a radical solution.

If I spend three hours in the archives of any newspaper, I will provide you with tens of features, investigative reports, articles and complaints from readers against the increasing phenomenon of illegal workers in various parts of the Kingdom, particularly the southern and western regions.

If I ride a taxi I will come out to you with stories about the fears of taxi drivers to enter certain underdeveloped districts, which are under total control of the illegal foreigners with nobody to deter them. It is obvious that we like to surprise ourselves with unexpected things.

I remember a letter from one of my readers a few years ago suggesting we build a high wall along our southern borders to “preserve the purity of our race”. Of course, I did not like this abominable racist statement but I do not deny that the issue was on my mind for quite a long time because it signaled that we would soon confront a problem that we would not be able to solve.

During the past few years I have been reading news about African infiltrators burning down forests in the south either in revenge against the security campaigns or in search of warmth in cold winters. I was waiting in vain for the declaration of mobilization by the authorities to curb this phenomenon but nothing happened.

I am confident that the “Ethiopian phobia” will diminish in a week or two because all the concerned parties will ignore the problem as if it has never existed. I am, however, still hopeful that a solution to the problem of illegal workers will be found. The first step toward a solution is not to link the phenomenon to a certain nationality because many of the overstayers are from Asian and Arab countries as well.

We should also realize that tightening the restrictions on citizens who are looking for regular workers will only help flourish the market for the illegal workers.

Modern methods should be used to curb infiltrations through our borders. Any prosperous country bordering less affluent countries must be prepared to confront this phenomenon otherwise it will find infiltrators in the very heart of its capital city.