Dubai: An expatriate couple is desperately seeking jobs to avert eviction, legal action over debts, and disruption of their children’s education due to a lack of funds.
The Pakistani couple in Dubai said they need employment for a steady income to cover various overdue payments — totalling around Dh101,200 — as well as ongoing living expenses.
Father of three Junaid Siddiqui, 51, said he lost his procurement manager job at a contracting company last May because of downsizing. His wife also lost her job as a schoolteacher.
They have three children — two sons aged 22 and 21, and a daughter aged 19.
Siddiqui, who suffered kidney failure in 2005 and survived prostate cancer in 2014, said the family’s debts and expenses have piled up beyond their capacity to cope, adding that his wife and he have been unsuccessfully trying to find work.
“If someone could guide me towards an opportunity, I can rebuild our lives again,” Siddiqui said.
He added that their unpaid rent of nine months has now amounted to around Dh45,000, and he fears an eviction process will soon be initiated as the landlord “cannot continue to be flexible indefinitely”.
He also needs to immediately settle around Dh5,900 in outstanding university fees for one of his sons, about Dh4,850 for another son’s higher education charges, and approximately Dh3,450 towards his daughter’s grade 12 fees.
“What hurts the most is to see your children at risk of losing an education,” Siddiqui said.
Meanwhile, the dues of his two credit cards have totalled around Dh42,000.
“I could face legal action over my debts. I have given post-dated cheques that could bounce, potentially leading to further legal action. Then I won’t be able to find work and our problems, as severe as they are now, will only worsen.”
Siddiqui added: “Even if someone comes forward to help resolve these outstanding issues, what about our ongoing living expenses after that? The best way out is to resume my career.”
His wife, who has qualifications in literature and Islamic studies, is also on the lookout for another job.
Siddiqui could also lose a free supply of immunosuppressant and anti-rejection medicine from an Abu Dhabi hospital.
“After my kidneys failed, an Abu Dhabi government hospital performed a kidney transplant operation for me, without charge, and also provided, and continues to provide, free medication, which I have to take for life. My brother was my kidney donor.
“If my legal status falls into jeopardy, my medicine from the hospital will be discontinued and my health will suffer greatly.
“If I don’t find employment soon, I fear an absconding case will be filed against me as I have turned down requests from my former company to have my work visa cancelled, but you cannot do anything without a visa.
“We are facing challenges on all fronts and I need an opportunity to work again to see us through these hard times. I have a good track record, working for a major local contracting firm, and have lived and worked in Dubai since 1999.”
Siddiqui said he and his wife have been relentlessly applying for jobs but have not yet secured any concrete leads.