Monday, June 10, 2013

Post-amnesty inspections to include home visits: Official

Saudi Gazette report

— The director general of the Ministry of Labor’s branch in Riyadh told businessmen at the Riyadh Chamber of Commerce and Industry (RCCI) on Saturday that a post-amnesty crackdown on workers violating labor regulations will include visiting employees at their homes.

Those at the meeting reacted with anger to Fahd Al-Khelaiwi’s announcement. They said they were surprised by the ministry’s intention to enter residences.

During the meeting, Al-Khelaiwi said after the grace period for illegal workers to correct their status ended on July 3, the subsequent inspection campaign would be thorough and carried out in cooperation with the Ministry of Interior. He said the ministry would announce the mechanism for the upcoming campaign soon, Al-Hayat Arabic daily reported on Sunday.

He said workers could transfer their services from the current employer even if their documents are with their employers.

The ministry enables workers to transfer their sponsorship during the grace period.

He said sponsorship cannot be transferred to firms that have opened files in the labor office after the beginning of the grace period.

Al-Khelaiwi stressed that the ministry permits the transfer of sponsorship during the grace period only with official authorization.

He said that the files of all workers visiting the labor offices cannot be resolved due to the large crowds.

He added that any extension of the grace period would depend on whether the backlog of paperwork can be completed on time.

He said members of Bedouin tribes are counted within Saudization quotas.

Ahmad Al-Mutawwa, director of the Labor Office in Riyadh, said the number of visitors to the labor office can reach 10,000 daily.

He stressed that the grace period is for workers and not for firms, but it rewards business owners who have already met Saudization quotas.