PM directs authorities to aid stranded Pakistani workers in Saudi Arabia

A file photo of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. PHOTO: FILE

A file photo of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. PHOTO: FILE

ISLAMABAD: Taking notice of the plight of Pakistanis workers stranded in the Saudi city of Dammam, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif directed on Tuesday the country’s embassy in Riyadh to have the issue resolved on priority basis.

“Pakistani workers from two companies, namely M/s Saad Trading and Contracting Company, Al-Khobar (520 workers) and Saudi Oger Limited (8,000 workers) are currently facing problems in getting their salaries and end of service benefits,” a statement issued by the Foreign Office said on Tuesday.

“The prime minister has directed to make arrangements for payment of pending dues and visa problems to facilitate the affected Pakistanis in case they intended to stay in Dammam or return back home,” sources told The Express Tribune.

Ordeal in Dammam: Stranded Pakistanis bank hopes on FO

“The companies do not refuse the claims of their employees but they have not been able to pay their dues for several months. In the given circumstances, most of the workers want to leave these companies but only after settling their dues,” the communiqué added.

The Foreign Office said the Pakistani ambassador to Saudi Arabia was vigorously perusing the matter with deputy foreign minister, minister of justice and secretary ministry of labour and governor of eastern province as well as the management of the companies concerned.

“The Saudi King has issued a decree for urgent payment of dues to workers by Saudi Oger Company. The company will also facilitate those workers who wish to leave by providing air tickets and renewing their resident permits.”

The foreign minister has also approved an amount of SAR0.1m (equivalent to PKR2.785m) from PCW&E Fund for providing relief to the workers by the embassy.

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