By Hatim Al-Rihaili
MADINAH — Miffed over expatriates gaining control over the truck drivers’ job market, about 400 Saudis on Friday demanded Saudization of their profession.
Mohammad Al-Thahri said about 400 drivers gathered in the sports stadium on Friday to demand Saudization of their profession.
“We demand to meet the officials of the Ministry of Labor and Social Development. We need a solution for our problem. We cannot get a job as truck drivers. All the jobs are taken by expatriates. We have a right to have the job market available to us,” said Al-Thahri.
He also said expatriates should not be allowed to work in this job market and anyone who would allow an expatriate to work as a truck driver must be penalized.
“Most of us rely on this job to feed our families. We show up every day at the parking lot braving the scorching sun and wait for work. The expatriates lure away all the customers offering lesser charges. They are also mostly illegals,” said Al-Thahri.
Mohammad Al-Rashidi, another driver, said he is responsible for the support of three families and he can hardly get a job.
“Since around five months ago, we noticed a surge of expatriates intruding into the market. They would contract customers on a regular basis and charge them a high price reaching up to SR5,000. What these expatriates are doing is illegal and they must be penalized,” said Al-Rashidi.
He also said there are over 300 expatriates in the truck driving market at the moment.
“We need the municipality to interfere quickly and find solutions. We have no other way of making an income. We also have to pay installments for our vehicles,” said Al-Rashidi.