UAE’s deportation of Africans to last till October 2018

South African President Ramaphosa praising UAE-African ties during a state visit to Abu Dhabi. Photo Courtesy : WAM

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (ADV) – United Arab Emirates authorities have vowed to pursue deporting Africans in conflict with the law until end of October 2018.

Uganda’s foreign affairs ministry confirmed the decision Monday as more than 150 Ugandans deportees arrived from the United Arab Emirates.

The deportations started on September 1st 2018.

Thousands of Africans have clandestinely been taken to the UAE via dubious networks that charge up to two thousand euros.

Ugandan government spokesperson Moses Kasujja told reporters that some of the deportees had committed various offences while some others were serving jail sentences in the UAE.

The deportation follows a series of protracted negotiations by the Ugandan embassy in Abu Dhabi, and negotiations are pending to ensure that those on life sentence are brought home; the source said.

Some of those serving life sentences were charged with drug trafficking.

Ugandan embassy officials in Abu Dhabi said, some Ugandans were arrested for unlawful stay, working with a non-sponsor and unlawful return after their previous deportation.

After Saudi Arabia, the UAE is among the leading destinations of illegal migrants from Africa with about 65,000 Ugandan workers deported from the Middle East last year.

In a related development; some 500 young Ghanaians were stranded in Dubai in February this year.

They were sent there by fake recruitment agencies to take up non-existing jobs.

Ghanaian Information Minister Mustapha Hamid explained that government was working closely with the security agencies to arrest the owners of the fake recruitment agencies that are exploiting desperate job seekers.

“These agencies manage to secure only tourism visas for these young people which expire after three months. They charge them between 8,000 and 15,000 cedis (1,453 – 2,725 euros) to secure them visas;” the minister explained.

In 2017, about 800 Ghanaian migrants illegally living in Saudi Arabia turned themselves in at Ghana’s mission there to be voluntarily deported.

The move followed a three-month amnesty granted illegal residents by the Saudi government to leave or be sanctioned.

President Nana Akufo-Addo then vowed to reverse the trend of irregular migration by Ghanaians, by building a sound economy with opportunities for all – a pledge that is feverishly being awaited.

© Bur-csa / From our regional correspondent Tamba Jean-Matthew III – African Daily Voice (ADV)