Rev. Dr. Asie Kabukie Ocansey, a renowned member of the African Union Labour Migration Advisory Committee, representing the Diaspora African Forum and founder of the Nekotech Centre for Labour Migration Diplomacy in collaboration with the Deadly to Decent Work Coalition-Middle-East and the University of Ghana’s Centre for Migration Studies, has launched her Amazon best-seller book ‘Deadly Work or Decent Work?’ in Ghana.
The book, also subtitled ‘SOS! Africa-Middle East Domestic Workers Migration Process’, was launched in a virtual event scheduled on September 9, 2020 via zoom.
It is an urgent call to action for all African leaders to address the increasingly deadly work experience for African women domestic workers in the Middle-East and to make a shift to decent work.
It is a go-to guide that demystifies the good, the bad and the deadly migrant hiring systems in the Middle-East.
It advocates for the creation of a dedicated multilateral platform – the ‘SOS! Africa-Middle East Domestic Workers Migration Process’ – with a roadmap and ten culturally illuminated keys for a paradigm-shift from deadly to decent work, for the benefit of the African member-states, the Middle Eastern countries as well as the migrant women domestic workers.
The Author presents recommendations, a plan of action and proposed framework to help solve this grave issue plaguing many African countries at the same time. She feels “burdened” to reach all African leaders in order to appeal for them not to patronise Kafala – the slave-like deadly employment system practiced by many of the Middle-Eastern countries.
She urges African leaders to choose one of four decent work choices which are available now for African domestic workers, while fighting human trafficking.
The book has a COVID-19 training manual and certification programme to ensure all African women domestic workers are certified and sensitised with soft and hard skills before going to work in the Middle East on Decent Work systems.
She advocates for rebranding the African domestic worker as highly professional, to command respect and attract good salaries for the women overseas and locally.
Speaking at the launch, Rev. Dr. Ocansey said: “This is a call from God to the world to save these young women and put a stop to this deadly practice immediately! Young African women need decent work and proper training, not deadly work!”
Many women from various African countries are still stranded in the Middle East, especially Lebanon, as a result of the COVID-19 pandmeic and recent huge explosion.
The event was also used to honour the efforts of Member of Parliament for Assin Central, Kennedy Ohene Agyapong, for donating over US$200,000 to bring back some stranded Ghanaian domestic workers in the Middle-East.
Also, Abike Dabiri Erewa – Chairperson/CEO of Nigerians in the Diaspora Commission (NIDCOM) – was commended for bringing back home some of the Nigerian women stranded in the Middle East. A special recognition will also go to the Executive Director – Omotola Fawunmi- of the US-based Rescue Africans in Slavery Organisation, which has rescued and returned over 300 women from Lebanon, Oman and Saudi Arabia to Ghana and the Ivory Coast.
The event was co-chaired by Rev. Dr. Lawrence Tetteh, Founder/President of the Worldwide Miracle Outreach, UK; and Professor Joseph Teye, Director of the Centre for Migration Studies at the University of Ghana. Migration Expert and Member of the African Union Labour Migration Committee representing IGAD – Intergovernmental Authourity on Development, Ms. Lucy Daxbacher, moderated.
Goodwill messages are expected from the president of the International Domestic Worker Federation, Mrs. Myrtle Witbooi.
Brief Bio of Rev. Dr Ocansey:
Rev. Dr. A.K. Ocansey, author of Deadly Work or Decent Work?, says she feels “a heavy burden” as a servant of God to caution African Leaders to ensure that “never again, should African citizens be subjected to slave-like work conditions anywhere!”
An Engineering Graduate of Rutgers University, NJ-USA, and a renowned Migration Expert with over 30 years’ experience, she is a member of the African Union Labour Migration Advisory Committee – which advises African Governments, representing the Diaspora African Forum. She has held consulting positions with the Ghana Ministry of Employment and Social Welfare.
She is also a theologian, philanthropist and successful businesswoman – CEO of SOS Global Investments, with a multi-business portfolio. She co-founded the multiple award-winning NGO, Nekotech Centre of Excellence.
She is a sought-after keynote speaker for migration, youth and women’s empowerment forums.