Dubai: A desperate, unemployed father of two teenage kids is appealing for help from the community after his wife and he tested COVID-19 positive.
While Ahmed Sohail Zaib, a Pakistani national, is asymptomatic and has isolated himself in his home in Al Nahda, his wife Shamima Fowzee, a Bangladeshi national, is on ventilator in a hospital in Al Dhaid. Their two teenage children who have been unable to attend school because of non-payment of fees are being brave enough to fend for themselves as both parents battle COVID-19.
Senior security personnel who lost his job
The travails of Zaib, 47 a Pakistani expatriate who came to Dubai in 2014, who worked as a senior operations manager in a leading security firm in Dubai, began in mid-2019, when he lost his job. His wife Fowzee, 40, a trained Montessori teacher, continued in her job and supported the family.
However, the family’s fortunes took a turn for the worse with the advent of COVID-19. Speaking to Gulf News, Zohaib said, “I have a good body of experience in the security sector and was hopeful of a job. I did not want to disrupt the education of my daughter, Fiza, 19 and son Ahmed Ahram, 16, so I purchased a visa to provide stability to the family and continued looking for jobs. However, with COVID-19 and lockdown, my prospects faded and my wife too lost her nursery school job. I haven’t lost hope and have continued applying to many organisations,” said Zohaib, who added that he had reached the end of the tether and felt suicidal with no ray of hope in his situation.
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The children had to discontinue school as the family’s dire financial situation made their fees unaffordable. “I haven’t paid the rent for my home for the last nine months and am still hopeful that someone will provide me with a job.”
Zohaib added, “I just do not want my children’s careers to be disrupted and hope that with help from the community, I will be able to get fair second chance at rebuilding my career and reclaiming the happiness of my family.”