Top construction firm punished for delaying salaries

Updated 08 March 2016

Top construction firm punished for delaying salaries

JEDDAH: The Labor Ministry is taking several measures to resolve the issue of some workers’ complaints of delayed salaries. The ministry would stop providing its services, including social security and passport affairs, to Saudi Oger Ltd. as part of its punitive steps, a source told local media on Monday.
The ministry has also formed a committee to address the issues raised by Saudi Oger employees, the source said, adding that the Riyadh governorate is expected to coordinate with the committee to resolve the matter.
The ministry has reportedly vowed to settle the salary dispute either by paying off the employees or clearing the arrears in installments.
Saudi employees of Saudi Oger have claimed that they have not been paid for four months. The workers were quoted as saying that they have financial commitments with banks and that they have to manage their family expenses.
The company, however, claimed that the salaries were delayed because it had not received payments for the projects that were implemented.
According to local media, Farid Shaker, director of Saudi Oger, had promised in an internal memo 10 days ago that a month’s salary would be paid to each worker within a week effective Feb. 14. However, the company reportedly failed to meet the commitment.
He had also promised that the regular payment of the salaries would resume from March and that the dues would be cleared in installments, the report said.
“The company had announced that it had no money to pay the salaries,” Sayyar Al-Shammari, an engineer working with Saudi Oger, was quoted as saying.


Saudi Arabia stops issuing visas to tourists from countries worst hit by coronavirus

Updated 1 min 23 sec ago

Saudi Arabia stops issuing visas to tourists from countries worst hit by coronavirus

  • Tourist visas will still be available electronically or upon arrival to citizens of other qualifying countries

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Tourism announced on Friday that it has temporarily stopped issuing tourist visas to people in certain countries particularly badly hit by the coronavirus outbreak.

The affected nations are China, Italy, Korea, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore and Kazakhstan. The decision applies both to electronic visas obtained online and traditional visas issued upon arrival. In addition, tourist visas previously issued to residents of the listed countries will be temporarily suspended.

Tourist visas will still be available electronically or upon arrival to citizens of other qualifying countries, but as a precaution they will not be allowed to visit Makkah or Madinah.

People in countries that are not eligible for electronic visas can check whether they can travel to the Kingdom by calling a helpline on 0096 692 000 0890. Residents of the US, the UK and Schengen nations can call the same number to check whether they can obtain a tourist visa.

The Ministry of Tourism said that the restrictions were designed to protect citizens, residents and tourists, in line with recommendations from health authorities.

“These procedures are temporary and are subject to continuous evaluation by the competent authorities,” a spokesman for the ministry said.

The latest restrictions come a day after Saudi authorities announced temporary bans on Umrah pilgrims and visits to the Prophet’s Mosque. They also said that holders of tourist visas from the countries worst affected by the virus would be refused entry to the country.

Also on Thursday, the Saudi health ministry said there are still “no known cases” of the coronavirus in the Kingdom.