The Migration Out of Poverty Research Programme consortium has called for proper regulation of the migration industry in the country.
According to a research by the consortium, the migration industry could yield more returns for migrants especially those engaged in domestic work and subsequently the economy if it is well regulated.
Presenting the findings of the research, “Migration Industry in Ghana,” Dr. Kandilige Leander, a member of the research consortium indicated that the migration industry is multi-sectoral with active recruitment agencies.”
The research which used the quantitative research approach to experiment how people migrated to Accra through in-depth interviews and participant observation showed that four types of recruitment agencies were operational in the country.
“We have the formal which is a registered recruitment agency that has a license to operate, semi formal that is registered as an organization but has not been licensed, the third is informal intermediaries that are not related and then we have the related intermediaries,” he indicated.
Dr. Leander indicated that most of the motivation for establishing the agencies was to deliver a service while others say they wanted to help others migrate and get a job the right way, “but they all said profit making was key to their work.”
He said migrants who get engaged through informal recruitment agencies normally received lower pay for their service because there were no contracts or monitoring of the migrants’ welfare.
He, however, noted that the research finding show that the migrants have a say in the amount they are to be paid and their conditions of service but because there is no regulations, their employer’s side of the bargain is not kept.
The research therefore recommended the enforcement of legal instruments to regulate wages and work condition in the informal sector including domestic work.
“Therefore if effectively regulated and managed, migration to urban areas could offer opportunities for poor migrants to provide essential services and also earn income to enhance the wellbeing of their families,” Dr. Leander said.
He reiterated the call for strengthening relevant state agencies both financially and technically to implement international and national laws on the protection of migrants working in domestic service. He said spatial inequalities in development must also be addressed urgently.
By Jamila Akweley Okertchiri