By Kayonde Abdallah:
POSSIBLE NEGLIGENCE AND TORT!
Tortious liabilities refer to civil wrongdoings or illegal actions that violate the rights of others and cause harm or injury to them. In the context of labour migration affairs, tortious liabilities can arise when an employer or recruitment agency engages in fraudulent or illegal practices, such as human trafficking, exploitation, or breach of contractual obligations!.
The law of Uganda sanctions those who fall trap of tortious liabilities in civil labour migration affairs by imposing penalties, fines, or imprisonment, depending on the severity of the offence. For example, the Prevention of Trafficking in Persons Act 2009 provides for a maximum penalty of life imprisonment for persons convicted of trafficking in humans, while the Employment (Recruitment of Ugandan Migrant Workers Abroad) Regulations 2021 requires recruitment agencies to obtain a license and comply with specific standards and conditions.
The law on negligence in externalization of labour refers to the legal duty of care that employers and recruitment agencies owe to their employees and the consequences of breaching that duty. It requires employers and recruitment agencies to exercise reasonable care and diligence in the recruitment, deployment, and management of migrant workers, and to take adequate measures to protect their rights and welfare.
If an employer or recruitment agency is found to have breached the duty of care, they may be held liable for negligence and required to compensate the affected workers for any damages or losses incurred. This may include compensation for injuries, lost wages, or other economic or non-economic losses suffered by the worker as a result of the negligence.
Ugandan external labour recruitment firms can be at risk of vicariability in terms of defending and protecting the rights of migrant workers they have recruited and profited on before sent to other countries. Even though they may not have jurisdiction in the destination countries, they are still legally responsible for ensuring that the rights of the workers they recruit are not violated.
Many countries have laws and regulations that require recruitment agencies to ensure that the rights and welfare of migrant workers are protected. This includes ensuring that workers are not subjected to exploitation, abuse, or trafficking. In some cases, recruitment agencies may also be held responsible for providing compensation to workers who have suffered harm while working overseas.
If a recruitment agency is found to have failed to fulfill its obligations to its workers, it may be held liable for damages or penalties. This could include fines, loss of license, and even criminal charges.
Therefore, it is important for Ugandan external labour recruitment firms to take their responsibilities seriously and to ensure that they are complying with all local and international laws and regulations related to migrant workers' rights especially through collective arrangements like the External Labour Power House, All recruitment agencies, migrant trainers and migrant workers' leadership in corporation with both sending and receiving governments, they can together work together to fostertheir assumed protection role to avoid all possible outcomes it may cause!!