Qatar is one of those countries that has this appeal that attracts people to it. Its rich, extravagant luxuries, the entertainment accessible to the public, the shopping paradise all make of it an amazing tourist hub, pulling people like a magnet. And, not to mention the job opportunities. Given the rate of unemployment in Mauritius, it is only understandable that people will find the grass even greener on the other side.
The Minister of Labour, Industrial Relations and Employment, Shakeel Mohamed, had recently been to Doha to sign an agreement on migration. Qatar has now, in fact, been negotiating with our country to hire maids. Being paid in Qatari riyals, what better. But, is it really worth it? Is the grass really greener? Or, is it just a mirage, the kind we’d see in Qatari deserts?
According to Laxmi Lota, correspondent of Radio Plus at Doha (ref: 25/02/2014), the working conditions of maids are appalling. She has related that the maids usually work for more than 12 hours per day, while they do practically all house chores. They live among the family for whom they work, and thus can be called at just about any time of the day and night to be at their service. Many have relayed that they do not even enjoy days off during the week. Furthermore, there is no such thing as minimum wage limit.
Greener, green, not so green, as it seems. Who would take the risk to go abroad to work in unpleasant conditions?