KUWAIT CITY, Oct 14: After the Ethiopian Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced its austerity measures will be closing 31 embassies and consulates around the world which included Kuwait from 1st of September, this put Ethiopians in Kuwait in a dire situation. There are around 30,000 to 35,000 Ethiopians residing in Kuwait from these 90% work as domestic workers without an embassy to represent.
A large number of Ethiopians had applied for renewal of their passports at the consular section in their embassy in Kuwait. But due to sudden closure they have been told to check information on the Ethiopian Embassy Facebook page from where to renew their passport, but on the embassy page other than closure mentioned in September, nothing new has been mentioned.
There has been delay in receiving renewed passports and many Ethiopians in Kuwait have to pay fines which is 2 KD per day as their passports have expired and are unable to renew their residence, report Al Rai. Since 90% of Ethiopians are working as domestic workers their sponsors will refuse to pay their fines as they are not the cause. Ethiopians will be forced to bear the expense which will lead to either absconding from their sponsor or leave their work.
One of the Kuwaiti citizen stated that he had submitted two of his domestic workers’ passport renewal 3 months back before the residence expired but so far he doesn’t know what has happened to their passports as their embassy in Kuwait has shut its door. Who will bear their residence fine?
The Ethiopian ambassador to the country, Hassan Tajo, stated that they are still waiting for instructions from Ethiopian foreign affairs, regarding renewal of passports which were submitted before the closure of the embassy in Kuwait will be sent to Ethiopian embassy in Saudi Arabia and the mechanism of delivery to its Ethiopian citizens will be announced soon.