Another worker has left his workplace in Australia three days ago, to join the first four who walked away from their workplace approximately three weeks ago, and nobody knows where they went.

The Australian Government has cancelled their Australian visas and Commissioner of Labour, Lionel Kaluat says they are now “illegal immigrants”.

He has raised his disappointment over the behaviour of the first four ni-Vanuatu SWP workers for leaving their jobs a few weeks ago and another one this week.

Commissioner Kaluat believes their behaviour could damage Vanuatu’s reputation and has blamed the illegal Tongan recruiters for the cause and claims that it may be a strategy used by these illegal Tongan recruiters to entice the Vanuatu workers so as to damage Vanuatu’s reputation in the SWP scheme.

The Employment Services Unit has declined to elaborate on any connection to the “illegal Tongan recruiters”.

The four workers that walked away in February are Haiton Brian, Harry John, George Steven and Batick James. The worker that left before yesterday is Tiwor Hencely. The workers are from the islands of Paama, Ambrym, Tongoa and Malekula.

The Commissioner of Labour is appealing to the families, chiefs and communities of the four islands to help the Vanuatu Government repatriate these workers to Vanuatu as soon as possible.

The Commissioner of Labour, recruiting agents and labour hire company are doing their best to relocate the workers and are calling upon family members to help bring these workers back to Vanuatu.

“If they do not help to get these workers back then there is a possibility that new workers from these islands intending to participate in the SWP programme will be banned for a period of time that is to be decided by the Commissioner of Labour until these workers are repatriated to Vanuatu”, he warned.

The Commissioner appeals to the family members and community leaders from the four islands to contact the Employment Service Unit on 33135 if they have any information on the whereabouts of these workers in Australia.

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