Malawi Parliament Allows Labor Export to Israel

Malawi Parliament Allows Labor Export to Israel

The government of Malawi has been given permission by the parliament to move forward with its plan to send 10,000 laborers to Israel to work on farms and in industries. Following a government fact-finding trip to Israel to assess the living conditions of the approximately 700 Malawians who were already employed there, the parliament approved the program on February 15, 2024.

The delegation met with Israeli cabinet ministers, visited the Israeli parliament, and had meetings with labor agents and workers, according to Joyce Chitsulo, the leader of the fact-finding mission, who presented the report to the parliament.

“In general, the Malawian laborers expressed that they were being well-treated and were carrying out their jobs in accordance with their contracts. Therefore, the delegation urges the government and young Malawians to seize the employment prospects in Israel,” Chitsulo stated.

Reports surfaced about some Malawian laborers fleeing Israeli farms for a variety of reasons, which prompted the visit.

“The workers reported that in some farms, Malawian workers were facing challenges, particularly pay differences, overtime pay and some routine issues of sanitation facilities in some cases, which were being addressed when reported,” Chitsulo stated.

She claimed that the main cause of the difficulties was that before leaving Malawi, the workers were not properly informed about what to expect in Israel.

Malawi started advertising jobs in Israel last year in an effort to increase its foreign exchange earnings. This week, Simplex Chithyola Banda, the minister of finance, announced that $735,000 had already been sent to Malawi as part of the Israel labor export agreement.

At the moment, agents in Israel and Malawi who have contracts with Israeli farmers in need of laborers are used to recruit Malawians.

Southern Malawian legislator Bertha Mackenzie Ndebele stated, “There are many young men and women who are hanging around; they have completed their education but have nothing to do. We are delighted to be joining the other women in Israel as Balaka West.”

Labor activists, however, contend that it is improper to have politicians assist in hiring new employees.

Luther Mambala, the former president of the Malawi Congress of Trade Unions, stated, “There are people of different political affiliations in constituencies.” “What will become of those who don’t support that specific MP’s [member of parliament] party? They will undoubtedly be overshadowed. They are part of a different party, so they will not be able to take advantage of that kind of opportunity.”

Mambala stated that it would be preferable if the Ministry of Labor established employment bureaus to hire workers based solely on qualifications.

Although 10,000 laborers from Malawi were expected to be sent to work in Israel, the delegation’s leader, Chitsulo, claimed that Israeli authorities informed them that Israel could hire up to 100,000 Malawians.

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