Warning over sale of Bahrain visas on Internet
Manama, March 30, 2014
People are being warned against rogue companies who blatantly flout Bahrain's laws by selling work visas openly on the Internet, a report said.
The Gulf Daily News (GDN), our sister publication, came across a firm based in Pakistan advertising them for sale on a website for BD1,200 ($3,164.6).
The site is popular amongst job-seekers and well-known companies, who use it to advertise job vacancies, said the report in the GDN.
It also acts as a forum to buy and sell household items, cars, and gain access to a range of other services such as babysitting, pet sitting, translation, transportation, photography, catering, real estate and event planning.
One of the advertisements was published under the link 'visa's available for job' with the heading "Bahrain Employment Visa for Sale".
It featured the logo of the Labour Market Regularity Authority (LMRA) and was posted under the company 'Nazir and Sons'.
"Skilled visa available for two years from LMRA designated as executive visa for BD1,200 only for Pakistanis," says the advert. "Please note that we are also offering company visa."
The advert has a telephone number, which is out of service, and a form to fill employee's details with an option to attach their resume.
LMRA officials confirmed it had nothing to do with the advertisement and its logo has been used dishonestly.
"The LMRA warns of fraudulent websites on the Internet that sell visas for such a big amount," said a spokesman.
"It warns of advertisements and invites everyone to be cautious of such websites.
"We urge people not to deal with any site except the official site of LMRA.
"Workers are not required to pay any money, but the employer is legally responsible for the transaction fees in full, according to the law.
"It is prohibited for any person to receive any money or obtain any benefit or advantage from an employee in lieu of issuing him a work permit or in return for the employment."
According to LMRA, around 52,000 expatriates are living illegally in Bahrain, some of who have paid huge amounts for visas on the black market to work here.
The spokesman said illegal residents and people on false documents were encouraged to come out of hiding and contact their embassies without fear of prosecution. - TradeArabia News Service