What you need to know:
- Members of the Parliamentary Committee who have already travelled to Saudi Arabia to ascertain the truth of the matter, say preliminary findings are “shocking”
The Parliamentary Committee on Labour and Social Welfare is investigating claims that Kenyans working in Saudi Arabia are tortured.
The Committee chairman, Kabinga Wathayu said members of the Committee had already travelled to Saudi Arabia to ascertain the truth of the matter, saying preliminary findings were “shocking”.
Mr Wathayu, who is the Mwea Member of Parliament, revealed how they found more than 200 Kenyan workers locked up in congested hostels, without clothes and food.
"The situation in that country is terrible. Our people are being subjected to all manner of mistreatment and something urgent must be done to protect them," he told the press at Wang'uru in Kirinyaga county.
"We want to get to the bottom of the matter. Those who torture our children must be exposed and appropriate action taken against them," said the Mwea MP.
Mr Wathayu added that his Committee will sit in Nairobi this week to gather more evidence from workers who managed to flee Saudi Arabia due to torture.
"We want to get as much information as possible from the victims. It is against human rights to torture anybody. What is happening to our people in the foreign country is unacceptable," he said.
Mr Wathayu said once the probe is concluded the committee will compile a comprehensive report and table it in Parliament for discussion and endorsement.
He warned that some of the employment bureaus in Kenya which recruit locals and send them to Saudi Arabia could be closed down after investigations were complete.
The torture of Kenyans in Saudi Arabia has been an endless tale of sadness. Kenyans are driven by poverty to Saudi Arabia in search of green pastures but they end up being tortured by their employers.
Some of them die while others are left crippled but unfortunately not a single death has been investigated or culprits brought to book.
Families of the torture victims have been crying for justice for long, forcing the Committee to intervene.
At the same time, Mr Wathayu said a Children Bill initiated by his Committee is in the offing.
"We want a bill that will protect our children from all forms of oppression," he said, adding that the law would address adoption and education of the children among other issues.