Body of girl from Ethiopia lying in morgue for a month

By Bassma Al Jandaly | Gulf News

RAS AL KHAIMAH, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – The body of a 19-year-old Ethiopian woman has been lying in the morgue here for more than a month because the sponsor and the labour agency are haggling over the responsibility of repatriating the body home, Gulf News has learned.

The sponsor and the agency who brought the girl from Ethiopia who worked as housemaid to the UAE are also refusing to pay the cost of her visa cancellation and repatriation of her body.

Alemitu Girma Hailu, who came to work for a family in Ras Al Khaimah, fell ill after a few days of her arrival due to heat stroke.

She spent two months in the hospital in coma before she died on October 9. Her body is still at the morgue waiting to be sent home.

Alemintu is the eldest daughter of poor parents who sent their daughter to work here in order to support them in their hard life.

While the mother and the father of Alemintu are waiting to receive their daughter’s body, the sponsor and the labour agency are haggling over the onus of the cost of repatriation and the cancellation of the visa.

An official from Ras Al Khaimah Naturalisation and Residency Department (RNRD) said that the ministry of interior’s law clearly states that in the event of the death of the domestic worker it is the employer’s responsibility to repatriate the body of the deceased to the home country and repatriate his or her personal effects as soon as possible, in coordination with the concerned authorities in the worker’s home country.

“The cost of visa cancellation and obtaining departure permission is not more than Dh200 and must be shared by both,” the official said.

The official who refused to be identified said that he is aware of Alemitu’s case but neither the sponsor nor the agency were cooperating in the case.

“The woman’s body has been at the morgue since October 9, and we hope to sort it out before the end of the year,” he said.

Alemintu worked only two weeks for the Arab family in Ras Al Khaimah when she was admitted to Ebrahim Bin Obaid Allah hospital in Ras Al Khaimah for heat stroke, septicaemia and pneumonia.

For repatriation the deceased will have to be embalmed at Al Maktoum Hospital in Dubai and will cost about Dh1,200.

A temporary shroud will be provided by the hospital and a simple zinc-lined coffin can be obtained for Dh1,000 (optional).

The casket will cost Dh1,000. Airlines may charge about Dh2,000. Hence the repatriation cost (without the temporary shroud) is about Dh4,500.

12 comments on “Body of girl from Ethiopia lying in morgue for a month

  1. Somaliman on

    Despite functioning embassies, Ethiopians are sadly experiencing endless humiliation in those damned countries, while Somalis without any embassy are just hitting hard and take no shit from those damned arabs.

    In this case, the damned Ethiopian embassy should intervene, they are not there just to drink and be after their private businesses. After all, I believe that the sponsors are either part of the embassy circle or have solid affiliations with…

  2. Gundet on

    That’s painful to hear. She is being treated badly even when she is dead. If she were at her home all this wouldn’t happen.

  3. yenatulij on

    wey lijie!

    Just curious, what does the Weyane Embassy do about that? Really! Aren’t they supposed to be there for us? Or should she have been lying about her true identity and registered as Tigrean (or better yet a Weyane stooge)? This is sad. The Arabs respect other people only if they know that there is someone who can take them to task of some sort. Let us face it, they still have the “Atilla the Han” and “Jengis kan” mentality. But again, who can blame them when “Our” government doesn’t even seems to care? Aye Weyane – agertchen endow mecheawetchitcu hona qeretalech? aye gud! yegna neger.

  4. bekele on

    Those Arabs are not just insulting and punishing Alemitu’s poor parents. What we are witnessing is a clear demonstration of how every single one of us as Ethiopians are willing to take the humiliation thrown at us by those Arabs. It clearly shows how much they disrespect us as a people and as a nation; it also shows us how we as a people easily accept this outrageous and inhuman insult from the Arabs and demand nothing, that’s how a defeated and demoralised people behave.
    As for our embassies;
    1st it’s only an embassy by name as I have never heard of our embassies around the world standing up to defend the rights of a fellow Ethiopian citizen. I only hear of them when the name of the regime is been rubbed the wrong side by the host nation or its media that I see the diplomats writing of a later of complaint.
    2nd in all honesty, we disserve what we get, the so called diplomats will only get to work if and when they know that they will be held responsible by the people who send them out to represent the interest of the nation and its citizens if they failed to act to protect the rights of a citizen. Since they know so well that the people of Ethiopia wouldn’t dare bother them in one way or the other, they’ll continue to bury their head in the ground and get busy with the more interesting business of fattening their pocket and defending the reputation of the regime.

    May God rest her body and soul in peace!!!
    May God awaken the people of Ethiopia from its long sleep to stand up for its rights and dignity!!!

  5. tezibt on


  6. Desta on

    Here is the Ethiopian Embassy’s contact info in UAE. Let us bombard those idiots with phone calls

    Ethiopian Federal Republic Embassy
    Tel: 00966-1-4824055
    FAx: 00966-1-4823821

  7. Mengistu H.Mariam on

    This is what Weyane Ethiopia means. Ethiopians die everywhere, in somalia, in Lebanon, and in UAE. Why??? because TPLF gets some money over them. Sad story.

  8. Wase Lehagere on

    There is an Ethiopian Consulate in Dubai. And also an Ethiopian Community organization.

    It’s absolutely shocking that both the above are silent while so much humiliation is occuring to a national of Ethiopia.

    I suggest that Ethiopia’s Foreign Minister as well as the Consul-General and the leaders of the Ethiopian community entity in Dubai should be dismissed. They only deserve the maximum punishment for bringing such shame to Ethiopia in an Arab country.

    How could others respect us when we disrespect each other so much!


  9. bekele on

    In any country any political opposition party would have jump on the ruling (wayane) party to hold it responsible for its carelessness and its incompetence of its diplomats, this could have been a God send chance to expose its failure. Where are the Dr Berhanu and Birtukan Midekesa of opposition parties when you need them?

  10. lesanework on

    Ato desta
    i tried the telephone number you gave to contact those stupid officials at the embassy the only thing you get is for english press 9 for arabic 8 other wise wait. after a long wait the phone hang up automatically. second attempt i pressed nine which did not work either. i lost my 4english pound for nothing, but i have learned how much our people are suffering at the hand of good for nothing embassy official. doing nothing to serve the people. at least if they are not able to answer the calls they should have organized message recieving option which is not there. one last thing which puzzled me is that the computerized message asking if you know the extention you want — is that meant for the insider weyane members. i hope i will get respons.

    for our beloved sister god bless her soul and my condelence for her family.

  11. Anonymous on

    IT IS AGAIN THE VICTOME AN ethiopian,may God rest her soule,i wish the people of ethiopia united and do something for her at dubai,we should not exepect any thing from Tegere EBASSY and so called ethiopian.
    wehen we tallking about this there are so many ethioians enjoying their time at SHISH CAFFE AT cit of ethiopian caffes,pleas do some thing ,it is goes round come round,time will pass but we will never forget THIS ETHIOPIAN agent and weyan ebassy as lon well as UAE,KUWAIT.FOR THEIR UNHUMAN TREATEMENT TO OUR SISTERS.

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