Search “sandwich preparer”: A fast food chain’s job offer in the United Arab Emirates sparked outraged reactions on social networks, but the prosecution announced on Saturday that it was opening an investigation.
The offer was posted by Emirati group Kamal Osman for the Jamzoom Subway fast-food chain, which is exclusively for Emirati nationals, “to support the state’s efforts to localize jobs”.
That’s because from January 1, a new law obliges most large private sector companies in the United Arab Emirates to hire Emirati nationals for skilled jobs under penalty of a fine.
According to the International Labor Organization, the “sandwich maker” offer has not been well digested in this wealthy Gulf country, whose nationals mainly occupy stable and relatively well-paid jobs in the vast public sector, while 90% of the private sector workforce is expatriate, according to the International Labor Organization (ILO).
“This is ridiculous”, took one surfer on Twitter.
“The lack of administrative, financial and technical jobs led to the creation of ‘sandwiches’…. Oh, what an era!” added another in a tweet shared hundreds of times.
Other netizens, however, felt there was no shame in taking up such jobs, with an Emirati claiming on Twitter that US billionaire Jeff Bezos started out as an employee at McDonald’s.
The United Arab Emirates Public Prosecutor’s Office announced in a press release without further details that it had found that the “job offer violated both Emiratization rules” and “media law” and had opened an investigation.
The job ad was later removed and the Kamal Osman Janjoom Group apologized, saying a “translation error” had led to the wrong wording.