International Labour Day 2021: UAE honours its workers

Syed Ayaz/Dubai
Filed on May 1, 2021

The UAE is home to over 2 million workers hailing from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and The Philippines to name a few.

Public and private organisations across the UAE lauded the efforts of its workers on the occasion of International Labour Day (May Day), observed every year on May 1.

The UAE is home to over 2 million workers hailing from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and The Philippines to name a few.

In Dubai, the government departments such as Dubai Municipality, Roads and Transport Authority, Ministry of Human Resource and Emiratisation (MoHRE), and other departments took to social media to thank workers for their services.

Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Tolerance and Coexistence, stated that the UAE workers were and are still in the hearts and minds of our wise leadership, and their present and future remains the concern of all UAE officials.

Sheikh Nahyan told a ministry ceremony to mark the Day, “This celebration with the UAE’s workers on their International Day this year acquires special significance in light of the Covid-19 pandemic. On this occasion, I congratulate every worker in the UAE, whatever his role and place. I also, extend my thanks and appreciation to workers who make commendable efforts in all economic, service and health fields and other fields for the renaissance and development of the Emirati society.”

On the occasion of Labour Day, Khaleej Times spoke to workers, many of whom said they were thankful to be working in a country like the UAE.

Abid A, a blue-collar worker from Pakistan, in charge of a labour camp in Al Qouz said: “The Dubai government has helped the labours in times of crisis. Under reformed laws, labourers should be provided 33sq/ft as living space as a result of which only five labourers can be accommodated in a big room compared to the ten earlier. Also, the salaries of labourers are paid through WPS system and thankfully nobody has to now queue up for pay. We are now commuting in air-conditioned buses to our workplace. The labours are also provided with delicious meals by the Dubai Police and other authorities.”

Sheila Parihar from Nepal, camp in-charge, Farnek, in Al Qouz said the UAE has given a lot to them. “Our rooms are spacious, neat and clean. During the peak of the pandemic last year, we were provided with sanitisers, masks, food and salary on time though we could not go to work. The Dubai Municipality is on regular cleanliness checks. Our PCR tests are done once a month and we are vaccinated. I am willing to bring my friends and people from Nepal,” she said.

“I arrived in UAE in 1992. I have a very peaceful life here and that’s the reason I want to continue offering my services. I have been provided with my basic necessities during the lockdown and restrictions last year,” said Abul Kasim, a worker from Bangladesh.

Ranjit Prabhakaran, a worker from Kerala, India, has been living in Sharjah for the last 12 years. He said he could provide a lot for his family by working in UAE. “Working in UAE I was able to construct a home for my family in Kasaragod, Kerala and also God has given me a chance to provide best for my family.”

Government departments, missions thank workers

Government and non-government organisations and heads of diplomatic missions have taken to social workers to thank and appreciate their hard work and dedication in building the nation as well.

Dr Aman Puri, the Consul- General of India to Dubai at the Consulate General of India, said, “We deeply value and acknowledge the enormous contributions made by Indian workers, both to the Indian and UAE economies. Indians constitute the single largest group amongst the blue-collar work force of the UAE and are well regarded for their honesty, dedication and hard work.” Dr Puri said the interest of blue-collared workers is a key priority for the mission in Dubai.

Dubai Municipality, said, “Dubai Municipality thanks and appreciates all its workers on International Workers Day for their efforts to achieve the Municipality’s vision to build a happy and sustainable city for everyone.”

The RTA said, “On labour Day, May 1, RTA will provide a set of incentives to the corporate sector and winners of “Honoring Labourers and Companies for Excellence” award, to support Dubai’s efforts to promote a culture of excellence in labour practices.”

Mohre said, “To every worker driving this country towards further success, to every engineer planning and building, to every doctor working tirelessly for our health, to every man and woman in various fields, together we lead the world & shape a better future.”

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