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Oman to tackle problem
of runaway workers

/ 2 February 2011

MUSCAT — Authorities in Oman have sought the public’s cooperation in tackling the problem of runaway workers who “pose a threat to the safety, security and stability of the country.”

Absconding employees have become a major issue in the sultanate and it came up for discussion at a Majlis Ash’shura meeting here last week.

“This issue is causing problems, which is adversely affecting the security, the economy and the society,” Captain Rashid Al Abri of the Royal Oman Police (ROP) said, adding:

“Despite efforts made by the authorities to control the problem, some individuals are still dealing with these absconding workers and they are reluctant to inform the security authorities about them.”

He noted that some local citizens provide them with shelter and employment. “If the society unites to curb this problem, it can surely be tackled,” he said.

Abri explained that employees escaped from their sponsors due to several reasons, adding that some sponsors too could be blamed for mistreating the employee, delaying payment of salary, burdening him with work and providing him with inadequate housing.

“Other reasons could be related to the workers themselves who are lured by other people offering better salaries. Such allurement especially involves absconding housemaids who run away from their sponsors to find better jobs on a higher salary,” Abri said.

“This problem is not in the interest of the country as it harms the public. Awareness campaigns play a major role in reducing this phenomenon,” he added.

He said all members of the society must cooperate to report any suspected case of absconding employees “as these people pose a threat to the safety, security and stability of the country. Such absconders are prone to commit crimes like theft, fraud and murder.”   


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