PM directs Labour Ministry not to implement agreement signed to cheat workers going to Malaysia 

KATHMANDU: Notwithstanding Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal has stopped the implementation of a controversial agreement signed by the Labour Ministry and the Foreign Employment Board with a private company of Malaysia, it has been found that the company has been using the logo of Nepal government illegally.

A ‘fraud company’ named Foreign Workers Welfare Management Centre, which had opened the office close to the Malaysia-based Nepali Embassy, has also been found misusing the logo of Nepal government and Malaysian government in its website.

The embassy has said that it has no knowledge about the issue while Non-Resident Nepali Association and foreign employment professionals have already expressed their objections by meeting Ambassador Dilli Paudel.

The Malaysia government has even not given permission for the company to collect USD 45 per Nepali worker.

Prime Minister Dahal had directed the concerned authority not to implement the controversial agreement signed by a group including Labour and Employment Minister Sharad Singh Bhandari with a private company of Malaysia with an aim to collect Rs 1.20 billion two days ago.

Following the directive of the Prime Minister, the Labour Ministry said that it has stopped the implementation of the agreement.

The embassy said that the Malaysian government has no knowledge about the agreement that would come into effect from January 1.

The Kathmandu-based Malaysian Embassy no other agreement has been made apart from the labour agreement of the two countries.

Joint Secretary Rita Dahal, who looks after the Central and Asia Pacific Region of the Foreign Ministry, said that no agreement has been made through the ministry and the agreement that connects two countries cannot be made from other ministries and agencies.

Nepal Foreign Employment Association Chairman Rajendra Bhandari said that the NRN and the representatives of the foreign employment professionals have drawn that attention of the ambassador after the Malaysia-based company started collecting the details of the Nepali workers by opening the office at a time when the implementation of the agreement has been stopped in Nepal.

The agreement which includes all the work from the collection of the personal details of the workers under the guise of doing welfare work was said to come into implementation from January 1.

Prime Minister Dahal stopped the implementation of the agreement following the protest over the decision to collect the extra fees from the workers instead of the Malaysian employer.

According to last year’s data, 200, 000 workers had left Nepal for Malaysia. This is 43 percent of the total foreign employment.

This is nothing but a grand design to cough up Rs 1. 20 billion from the 200, 000 workers and to distribute among the minister, Malaysian company and middlemen.

It has been learnt that the Malaysian company was established by Bijay Manandhar of Nepal among others.

A company named Nepalis Workers Project Centre was also found to have been registered with an aim to collect money from the Nepali workers. Manandhar has stood as a witness.

Spokesperson at the Ministry Rajib Pokharel said that the further process could not move ahead after the Prime Minister directed the concerned authority to stop the implementation of the agreement.

Foreign Employment Board Executive Director Dwarika Upreti had also gone to Malaysia to inaugurate the Centre’s office established close to the Kuala Lumpur-based Nepali Embassy after the agreement.

The company in Malaysia was established to enforce the rule where the employer of Malaysia has to pay USD 45 per worker to certify the demand letter by bringing the agreement into implementation.

The Embassy will authenticate the paper only after submitting the receipt of payment of USD 45 i. e 200 Ringit.

This is the extra fee the employer company has to pay to the Government of Nepal except the revenue.

The Foreign Ministry has expressed its objection after it was found that the company was set up with an aim to collect money from the workers which was against the labour agreement and diplomatic relations of the two countries.

Raj Kishor Yadav, President of the International Relations Committee of the House of Representatives, said that the committee attention has also been drawn towards the issue.






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