By Brenda Kiprono
The government has introduced stringent measures aimed at protecting Kenyans who work in the Gulf States.
Cabinet Secretary in Ministry of East African Community, Labour and Social Protection Phyllis Kandie says all recruitment and employment agents will now be vetted afresh and will be required to reapply for accreditation and licensing.
The agencies will also be under continuous surveillance by the government.
According to East African Community, Labour and Social Protection Cabinet Secretary Phyllis Kandie the rules and regulations are meant to weed out unscrupulous agents.
In the recent past a number of cases have been reported of Kenyans recruited to work in foreign countries especially in the Middle East being subjected to inhumane working conditions and some even dying in unclear circumstances.
To prevent further mistreatment, Kandie says that the government will require host countries to sign agreements to protect the rights of Kenyans working there.
The new rules require an agency to be a registered company with at least one director being a Kenyan.
Agencies are also barred from engaging in child labour, trafficking of persons or forced labour tendencies.
In 2014 a blanket ban on the exportation of all types of Labour was imposed following increased cases of Kenyan workers being mistreated in the Middle East.
The ban was lifted early this year enabling Kenyans with skills in accounting, hotel management and secretarial to work in the Gulf States.