KATHMANDU, June 13: Nepal has been elected in the governing body of the International Labour Organization (ILO), 50 years after it became member of the United Nations (UN) body.
The country was elected, alongside Bangladesh, as the deputy member in the governing body from the Asia Pacific region in Geneva on Tuesday.
As per the ILO rule, two countries of Asia Pacific region can become member of the governing body for a three-year. Along with Nepal and Bangladesh, Pakistan, India, Iran, Afghanistan, the Maldives and Sri Lanka are in the group of the Asia Pacific region.
A total of 66 member countries will be elected as the deputy member of the organization. Of them, 28 will be elected from the government group, 19 from the private sector and 19 from the representative of labor unions.
Stakeholders say the members of the governing body are powerful as they can make labor-friendly law, and make amendment to acts and laws, among others.
Bhimeshwar Pokharel, an under-secretary of the Ministry of Labor and Employment, said that the government had been trying to be in the governing body since long. “The team, which is currently in Geneva, has informed that Nepal has been elected to the governing body. As it has not divulged other details, I cannot tell you the number of votes that Nepal received,” Pokharel told Republica.
Nepal decided to field candidacy to become member of the governing body of ILO as the country has been sending hundreds of thousands of youths to overseas job destinations every year. According to the Department of Foreign Employment, 4.4 million youths travelled to foreign countries in the search of employment opportunities last year.
Though ILO has clearly stated that laborers do not have to pay any charge while going for foreign employment, Nepal youths have been forced to pay certain fee before heading to overseas job destinations.
Now that Nepal has been elected to the government body of ILO, government officials say that Nepal can make needful plan ensure safety of Nepali migrant workers in foreign land. Aspiring migrant workers are hopeful that the ministry will now implement free visa and tickets for youths going for foreign employment. “The government must implement the free visa and ticket provision now. It will be a matter of shame for Nepal if it fails to implement the provision despite being elected to governing body of ILO,” Sundar Thani of Kalinchowk, Dolakha, who is preparing to go to Malaysia for foreign employment, said.