Overseas job seekers gather to get smart cards, the clearance certificates for the migration, at the office of the Bureau of Manpower, Employment and Training at Kakrail in the capital yesterday. Photo: Star
Bangladesh Association of International Recruiting Agencies (Baira) yesterday postponed its strike to help normalise the country's manpower export activities.
“Considering the difficulties people are facing in getting clearance for migration, we have postponed the strike,” Baira Secretary General Ali Haider Chowdhury told The Daily Star.
The executive committee of Baira took the decision at an emergency meeting on the failures of BMET, the government manpower bureau, in issuing clearance to migrant workers in time.
The Bureau of Manpower, Employment and Training (BMET) has been struggling to issue clearance since Baira went on an indefinite strike on April 9, blaming the government's role in losing foreign job markets.
The bureau has undergone heavy workload due to Baira's suspension of manpower export activities that created bottlenecks for the job seekers in taking flights abroad in due time.
The job seekers staged protests against the BMET, alleging that it had failed to clear their applications in time as it is understaffed and does not have the proper infrastructure.
They added they had to come to the BMET office on at least three or four occasions to get clearance but earlier, when Baira used to process job applications, it took people only one day.
Kabir Hossain, applying for a job in Oman, came to Dhaka from Bhola on Sunday and submitted his application. But he was yet to obtain permission to leave for the country yesterday.
“I have been waiting for my clearance certificate for the last three days,” he told this correspondent. “I do not know when I will get it.”
Many other job seekers echoed his words, saying they were worried about missing their flights due to the delay.
Md Mizanur Rahman, director (emigration and protocol) of BMET, however, said they have set up 18 counters to speed up the processing of applications.
“We are working till night to hasten the migration activities,” he said yesterday.
The issuance of clearance is taking more time now as the BMET has been checking job application of one person at a time, but earlier, recruiting agencies dealt with them in bulk, the director explained.