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17 January, 2006

Heeding the masses

Another one for the Great Sheikhs series: following in the footsteps of his exceptional boss, Labour undersecretary Dr Khalid Khazraji also has an impressively progressive attitude. Asked about the controversial labourers' rights website, Mafiwasta.com, Dr Khazraji has plenty of praise:

Dr Khazraji said although he could not comment on the website's legality, he said it was a valid channel for people to express their opinion "in a peaceful way."

"As an authority, I see this as a channel which can put workers voices through, and it reaches me, so I can see what labours think and want."

"I follow it because it concerns me. I want to know what people are thinking, and this is one way for labourers to make their voices heard." Dr Khalid Khazraji Labour Undersecretary.

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8 Comments:

Blogger BuJ said...

SD,
Very interesting and especially bold for a government official to take such a position. Dr Khalid Khazraji has been in the spotlight a lot these days.

As for the article, I guess you're referring to this:

http://www.gulfnews.com/nation/Technology/10012185.html

17 January, 2006 03:00  
Anonymous SZR said...

SD,
It is good to hear such comments being made .... as regards the Workers' Rights Website, though, I was looking at it the other day and it doesn't seem to be kept updated. I think the last update I noted (at least on the home page) was something like the middle of 2005.

Is it still an ongoing, active, maintained entity?

SZR

17 January, 2006 07:25  
Blogger the shadow said...

Dr. Khazraji's proactive attitude is an unexpected breath of fresh air! In one fell swoop, he makes his contemporaries, who might find such self expression threatening, look distincltly prehistoric.

17 January, 2006 09:34  
Anonymous Destitute Rebel said...

@ SZR - The people who started the website used to work in the UAE they have left now but on last contcat about a week they said they will updating the website soon.

17 January, 2006 10:22  
Blogger secretdubai said...

buj - thanks for spotting that, I have now fixed it.

17 January, 2006 11:08  
Anonymous Diabolo said...

Yeah great!

Here's one more "we've gotta help the workers" article. Wonder why nothing gets done! Heck, by judging the way they've been throwing one fee after another at the employers (3000 bucks deposit and 2500 for this A, B, C category nonsense... THATS 5500 PER PERSON!) it looks like they want the employer to loose money and not pay the workers.

Dont get me wrong... I empathise strongly with the workers but nothing's been done for (wait a minute... lets get this right) 35 years? An the dudde still wants to be "informed"?

There's an old saying back where I come from... "All Fart and no S**t!" Kudos to the Dr. (of what?) for speaking out - I know it takes a lot of virtue (yada yada yada) to what he's done but... get on with the show folks!

17 January, 2006 14:16  
Blogger nzm said...

You have to wonder why it takes a website put up by departed expats for the labourers' "voices to be heard".

Unless the reports on the website are put there by non-labourers, I can't see any labourers rushing to record their problems here - even if they could get internet access.

The Dr's comments are a clever diversion.

If he truly was concerned, and as a self-named "authority" - surely it would be easier for him to visit any of the numerous construction sites, or visit the camps, to get the status quo directly from the labourers?

Why does he need a presently outdated website to inform him?

17 January, 2006 14:30  
Blogger archer14 said...

Sure it's a peaceful way of expressing their opinion, as Dr.Khazraji puts it. When there are an average of 2 strikes a month (since september), the authorities don't give two hoots. So whats a puny website going to change when labourers aren't even in a position to feed themselves, let alone access the site?
But it's good the Dr. put on his glasses. It's been smoky since september. It's easy to talk the talk, lets hope someone walks the walk.

17 January, 2006 15:22  

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