12 April 2018

Uganda: Trafficked Ugandan Girl Dies in Oman

Photo: Daily Monitor
A woman, who was mistreated while in the Middle East, breaks down before journalists. Right is Moses Binoga, coordinator of the anti-human trafficking task force (file photo).

Kampala — A Ugandan girl, said to be one of those trafficked to the Middle East country of Oman, has died with reports linking her death to torture.

Sources in Oman have briefed Daily Monitor the 24 year-old, identified as Doreen Karungi, was found dead on Tuesday inside a small room in Ibra town about 170km from the capital, Muscat.

Suffering from alleged torture wounds and starvation, she had been locked up in the room with another Ugandan who is reportedly suffering from mental disorder.

It is a common practice for Omani and Ugandan human trafficking agents to lock up girls in their offices in the different towns of the Arab country, especially when the victims decide to abandon work to elude torture from their bosses.

The housemaids trafficked from Uganda, on arrival in Oman, are deployed to houses of the clients who sponsored their travel. They are made to sign contracts for two years and they are liable to compensate the sponsor in case she decides to leave before completion of the contract.

Daily Monitor has seen documents which identify the deceased as a daughter of Mr Enock Nkojo and Ms Harriet Atuhairwe of Parajwoki village in Hoima District.

Details from the family were still scanty by press time because the only telephone number available on the documents was switched off.

Barely a week ago, a Ugandan diplomat, Mr Habib Migadde, visited Oman to engage with the Ministry of Manpower on how the Uganda embassy in Riyadh can collaborate with the Oman authorities in streamlining the safety of Ugandans working there.

What leaders say

The leadership of the newly formed Uganda Association in Oman has confirmed the demise of the young woman.

The association chairman, Mr Ahmed Mohammed, yesterday said the Omani agent who recruited the deceased only directed him to the army hospital in Muscat where the body had been transferred. Mr Mohammed and other members of the association were set to drive to Muscat yesterday evening to receive the body before making preparations to return it to Uganda.

Mr Habib Miggade, the head of commercial diplomacy at the Ugandan embassy in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia said they had been notified on the matter and were set to open correspondences with the Oman government on how to manage the issue.

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