The Minister of Labour, Social Security and Industrial Relations Minkailu Mansaray has in a brief but very sensitive interview with Awoko acknowledged the fact that, there were non – Residents or Citizens working in Sierra Leone without authentic working and residential permits from his Ministry.
He said the issue regarding non-residents or non-citizens working full time in Sierra Leone is not a new phenomenon as we have experienced it as far back as the colonial era after the abolition of slave trade when everybody was penetrating the African continent in search of goods and labour.
As he put it “there will be quit order for all illegal residents working in Sierra Leone without residence and work permits in order to give chance to well meaning people who have fulfilled all the required criteria to stay and work in Sierra Leone.”
A committee comprised of credible citizens he disclosed has been set up with the mandate to review some of the old legislation pertaining to the labour laws.
He confirmed that towards the end of next week the committee would have done some great work on some of the old labour legislations and there and then his ministry would make a public statement on the status of all non-residents working in the country without proper documentation such as: residence and work permits.
He therefore called on everyone concerned to regularize their documents, otherwise he said, they might institute quit order as a last resort.
He said this action is not in anyway in contravention with bilateral or multilateral understanding between and among countries as it is done in the best interest of public safety and national welfare to replicate best standards and practices in developed nations. There has been a lot of complains among the labour force in Sierra Leone that most investors coming into the country come with their foreign staff to occupy executive positions with little regard to our compatriots who are relegated to menial jobs.
By Solomon Rogers