The Federation of Somali Trade Unions (FESTU) applauds the official signing and ratification of seven International Labour Organisation (ILO) Conventions by Somalia’s Prime Minister, Mohamed Hussein Roble, on behalf of the Federal Government of Somalia, on 9 February 2021. This follows the unanimous approval by the Council of Ministers on 24 December 2020.

FESTU had been the lead initiator for the ratification of these instruments and is very proud about these historic milestone achievements for Somalia. By consistent lobbying for the ratification of these important ILO conventions, securing the support of the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs (MOLSA) and employers, and advocating for proactive and constructive engagement between Somalia’s tripartite constituents, this outcome will continue to have significant implications on the working women and men of Somalia.

The following ratified conventions represent key strategic opportunities to address the challenges experienced by workers, including migrant workers and their families:

Three conventions on labour migration – Convention 97 on Migration for Employment Convention and Convention 143 on Migrant Workers (Supplementary Provisions) Convention; and Convention 181 on Private Employment Agencies Convention – will directly address the well-documented plight and abuses of Somali migrant workers who continue to face legal challenges and the lack of protection while seeking jobs abroad. These conventions will be the basis for the possible development of national labour migration policy and Somalia’s bilateral agreements with countries seeking migrant workers.