2,499 undocumented workers have been sent back to Bangladesh thus far.
Communications Director at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Miuvan Mohamed, revealed this during an interview on RaajjeTV’s “Maldives Weekly” on Saturday.
While President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih had, back in early May, revealed work to send back 1,500 undocumented workers, Miuvan said that the figure noted by the president was the number of passengers already scheduled to fly back.
Noting that more than 1,500 undocumented workers have been sent back thus far, Miuvan said that the number has reached 2,499.
Furthermore, the foreign ministry’s communications’ director highlighted that this work is being carried out following “successful” discussions between the Maldivian and Bangladeshi governments.
He also noted that Foreign Minister Abdulla Shahid and his Bangladeshi counterpart have discussed the matter on three occasions, and that they were able to send the undocumented workers “as a result of these talks”.
Miuvan also said that they do not have an exact number of undocumented workers to send back, but that the work will continue in the coming days, together with the Ministry of Economic Development and Maldives Immigration.
“So far, we have sent back 2,499 undocumented workers to Bangladesh, after successful discussions between the Maldivian and Bangladeshi governments. Foreign Minister Abdulla Shahid has spoken to Bangladeshi foreign minister on three occasions on this matter and the talks were very successful, so far, we have been able to send this number [2,499] undocumented workers as a result of these talks”
~ Miuvan Mohamed
Further noting that the work regarding undocumented workers was launched in late 2019, Miuvan said that this was halted following the Covid-19 pandemic.
He stressed that the undocumented workers identified as one of the most vulnerable communities to Covid-19, and hence, it was important to handle the situation as soon as possible.
“The Bangladeshi government and the Bangladeshi High Commission in Malé have been very helpful and providing all the necessary assistance in sending [undocumented workers] back home”
~ Miuvan Mohamed