Major companies in Bahrain respond to government’s clean-up call in labor camps

Employers were urged to deal with the growing cases of coronavirus among migrant workers, including implementing social distancing rules in usually densely populated labor accommodation sites. (File/AFP)
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Updated 21 April 2020

Major companies in Bahrain respond to government’s clean-up call in labor camps

  • The health ministry in Bahrain earlier noted 90 percent of active coronavirus cases in the country were among migrant workers
  • Thousands of migrants in Bahrain have been relocated to safe shelters this week

DUBAI: Dozens of companies in Bahrain have responded to the government’s order to ensure labor camps were within acceptable health standards amid the coronavirus outbreak, local media Gulf Digital News reported.

Bahrani Crown Prince Salmab bin Hamad Al-Khalifa said the government was launching a campaign based on an earlier directive issued by the country’s labor ministry. 37 companies have already followed the campaign – an additional 131 employers have asked for time, according to the report.

Employers were urged to deal with the growing cases of coronavirus among migrant workers, including implementing social distancing rules in usually densely populated labor accommodation sites.

“As per the existing labor law, there should be a four-meter free space around every employee in a labor camp,” the crown prince said, adding it would be “challenging, but we should do our best.”

The health ministry in Bahrain earlier noted 90 percent of active coronavirus cases in the country were among migrant workers.

Labor and Social Development Minister Jameel Humaidan said the campaign aims to “reduce the numbers of employees in the camps.”

Employers, which cover around 2,200 registered labor camps in the country, were ordered to provide separate accommodation for infected workers.

The new labor restrictions follow a wider government contingency plan to contain the spread of COVID-19.

Thousands of migrants in Bahrain have been relocated to safe shelters this week, according to a report by Gulf Daily News, and plans were underway to move more low-income workers and ease overcrowding in labor camps.

“We have identified Blocks 300 to 325 as being densely populated areas in Manama where there is a high concentration of migrant workers,” Capital Governor Sheikh Hisham bin Abdulrahman Al-Khalifa said.


COVID-19 infection rates among UAE citizens increased by 30%

Updated 5 min 3 sec ago

COVID-19 infection rates among UAE citizens increased by 30%

  • The total number of recorded cases in the UAE is 61,845 and 354 deaths
  • Meanwhile, the UAE celebrated reaching 5000 vaccinated volunteers in its phase III trials of an inactivated vaccine

DUBAI: The UAE’s Minister of Health and Prevention announced a 30 percent rise in new COVID-19 cases among citizens on Thursday and warned of the dangers of gatherings that do not follow measures.

The minister called for those in the UAE to exercise caution and care in order to curb the spread of the deadly virus.

The official spokesman for the UAE Government, Omar Al-Hammadi, said that the total number of recorded cases in the UAE is 61,845 and 354 deaths, while the current number of patients receiving treatment has reached 5,752.

Meanwhile, the UAE celebrated reaching 5000 vaccinated volunteers in its phase III trials of an inactivated vaccine for COVID-19, state news agency WAM reported.

The trials began in Abu Dhabi last month after China’s Sinopharm CNBG, the world’s sixth-largest vaccine manufacturer, developed an inactivated vaccine that successfully completed phase I and II of testing.

Phase I and Phase II trials, which were conducted in China, resulted in 100 percent of the volunteers generating antibodies to SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, after two doses in 28 days.

Over 80 nationalities in the UAE have volunteered to participate in the trails, according to WAM.

“This milestone marks a significant achievement for the ongoing clinical trials and is testament to the global commitment to humanity of everyone who calls the UAE home,” Chairperson of the National COVID-19 Clinical Management Committee, Nawal Ahmed Alkaabi, said.

"We reached the 5000 vaccinations faster than anticipated and believe that our trials of the inactivated vaccine are moving faster than comparable trials processes anywhere in the world,” he added.

Alkaabi said that the UAE aims to vaccinate 15,000 volunteers.

The thousands of volunteers who have been vaccinated come from a diverse background and are of all ages between 18 and 60.