Respecting Expatriates

Al Hambra Kuwait

Below is new prospective article written by Talal Al Ghannam, a former Managing Editor at Kuwait News Agency (KUNA). Mr. Talal articles mostly tackles about the plights of expatriates living and working in this small yet rich country – the State of Kuwait.

Good day to my honorable readers. In the past few weeks, I encountered many cases of mistreatment of some expats who came here for a decent living. They spoke about their experiences in Kuwait and the mistreatment and the abuses against them by their sponsors.

They said that they had a dream to come to Kuwait to make a decent living not only for them but for their loved ones whom they left behind including their mothers, fathers, sisters and brothers, besides elderly parents who heavily depend on their sons and daughters who spent a bundle in order for them to come here and survive.

They sell everything back home, including their cattle, properties, and some even borrowed huge amounts of money to come here and try to compensate. Suddenly their dream became a nightmare. For many of them Kuwait is the land of dreams come true and as soon as they arrive in Kuwait and pass through the gates of the airport their misery starts with a yelling by the lady sponsor (Yallah taaly meaning move it, carry this, carry that, don’t you understand, I will take you to the office).

The worker becomes puzzled by this “warm or heated welcome” and prays that what will come next be at least a little lighter than this arrival welcome. She or he then enters the house, a minute later, they will be welcomed again by the kids who yell: Bring me water, wash this, wash that without even thank you or please. Just orders…orders.

The third obstacle the newcomer would face is the other workers in the house, especially if she or he is from another nationality where blames are exchanged between the two forcing the sponsor to abandon one of them. The next morning, she or he wakes up with a mountain-load of work awaited him or her without help from nobody, making the worker recollect the day when he or she decided to come to Kuwait to earn a living and to relax at least as a human being. A few hours later orders come.

No mobile, no day off, not one hour of rest, and no complaint otherwise you will be taken back to the office as if the recruitment office is hell fire. This thing will make the worker rethink a thousand times to find a way to get out of this dilemma by either running away, committing suicide or taking it out on one of the family members to ease his or her suffering.

Why do we have to wait for this moment to occur? To resolve this, and stemming from the teachings of Quran and the Sunnah of Prophet Mohammad (Peace and blessings be upon him) who treats his servants as his brother or sister by not putting burdens on them, listening to their complaints, never shouting at them, calling them by their actual name not like what happens here in Kuwait in some police stations when the personnel there call the tea boy (Shareka) meaning company without even respecting his presence.

Lastly, they are here to help us, care for us, to make our country prosper and without them we will never survive because we have too much wealth and got used to having things come to us easily without working for them.

So treat them well, fear Allah in them because one day we might be in their shoes and that is life (One day for you and one day against you).

Until the next article Insha Allah.

By Talal Al Ghannam

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