Youths demonstrate against government with play-card. Photo: DilBahadurLimbu's Twitter
KATHMANDU: Nepali youths who have not been able to go to South Korea for the past one and a half years despite passing the language test have launched a campaign to draw the attention of the government through social media Twitter.
Twitterati have started a ‘Justice for EPS Passer’ campaign on Twitter to draw the government’s attention mentioning Prime Minister KP Oli and Minister for Finance Bishnu Rimal to the fact that South Korea did not take workers from Nepal even though it took workers from other countries.
The hashtag #j#justiceforepspasser has reached to number one trending tag on Twitter in Nepal on Tuesday. So far, over 28,000 tweets have been made in the campaign.
There is confusion in the employment of Nepali workers in South Korea after COVID-19. Since the first week of March 2020, not a single worker has been able to go to South Korea from Nepal through the EPS system.
According to EPS Korea branch, under the Department of Foreign Employment, about 7,000 workers who have passed the regular language test and entered into a ‘labor contract’, and 3,000 other workers who returned home on holiday have been stranded in Nepal.
Once the labor contract arrives, the worker must fill out a ‘Certificate for Confirmation of Visa Issuance’ (CCVI) form. Accordingly, South Korea issues CCVI and visa must be obtained within three months of getting CCVI.
However, about 1,000 workers, who obtained CCVI and visa, got their contracts canceled as they could not reach South Korea on time since the pandemic began in December 2019. They are forced to wait on the roster again, back to where they had been after passing the language test. They now have to get another labor contract within a year or else they will have to re-appear in the EPS language test.
— Sangam Khanal (@SangamK11779559) June 10, 2021
@kpsharmaoli @BishnuRimal we been waiting since last 15 months to go s.korea. plz help us & do initiate G-G dialogue with korean goverment. Thanks #JusticeForEpsPasser #JusticeForEpsPasser pic.twitter.com/UlZPf3Vtvq
— padam rai (@padamrai45) June 9, 2021
@BishnuRimal #justiceforepspasser respect pm sir,humbly request you to hold high level talks as soon as possible as about 10000 thousand youths have been trapped in indecision for various reasons and excuses even after completing all the procedures under eps for the last 17 month
— RABIK KHADKA (@KhadkaRabik) June 10, 2021
— Bini Gautam (@gautam_bini) June 10, 2021
More than 5,000 workers on the waiting roster have not received their labor contracts till date. Workers must be removed from the waiting list if a labor contract does not arrive within two years of being added to the roster.
Sitaram Nepal of Chitwan Rapti Municipality says that they are facing problems as the government has not taken the appropriate initiative.
Ajay Sodari from Kathmandu, who was barred from going to South Korea, said, “We spent a lot of time and investment to pass the language test, but it has been 15 months now we are only waiting.” He added they are saddened that the government is not taking the problem seriously.
Stating that the coronavirus pandemic has spread in South Korea, the Nepali government itself had stopped people from going to South Korea for employment from the first week of February 2020. Then South Korea had expressed dissatisfaction with the decision of Nepal government of withholding workers, saying it was not discussed on the issue.
Although the pandemic is now under control in Korea, it has not shown interest in taking Nepali workers.
The government, on the other hand, has been saying that efforts are being taken to send workers and extend the validity of waiting list. However, workers, waiting for the government to act, are not confident and satisfied.