“By the end of October, 130 would have been repatriated back home” President Bio.
NEW YORK-President Julius Maada Bio and First lady Fatima Bio met with dozens of Sierra Leonean domestic maids stranded in Lebanon. In a meeting he described as a family gathering streamed on Facebook live by First lady Fatima, the president expressed regret that some of them chosed to enter Lebanon illegally because of perceived hardship. “The world is hard everywhere at the moment. Change doesn’t come in a day. It takes time and determination”, he said.
President Bio called on the women to learn from their mistakes and experiences and assured them that by the end of October, 130 of them will be repatriated back to Sierra Leone to be reunited with their families. President Bio also donated an amount of $ 10,000 to the Sierra Leonean union in Lebanon to help them stir their activities in the interest of their members.
A representative of the Sierra Leonean union in Lebanon applauded the President and First lady for the humanitarian gesture. He said there’s a big syndicate on how Sierra Leonean domestic maids ended in that country. “They travel through Guinea and ended in Lebanon through fake promises and deals. Some of them are traumatized and have engaged in prostitution to survive”, he said.
The representative said there are over 300 Sierra Leonean maids in Lebanon. “Some are in prison while others cannot move around because their travel documents are in the hands of their fake agents”, he said. He appealed for protection for those that will remain in the country whose lives might have be affected in one way or the other.
In could be recalled that in August this year, the BBC reported about the plight of Sierra Leonean domestic maids in Lebanon who are going through harsh treatments in the hands of their employers. The maids in the video, expressed their willingness to return home and appealed to the government to help in that direction.