Ajman: Three Bangladeshi children in Ajman face the prospect of discontinuing their education due to financial constraints. Salman, 18, and 13 year-old twins Mohammad and Ahmad fear their names could be struck off the rolls any day as their parents have fallen on hard times and are unable to pay their school and college fees.
Their mother Fatima, from Mumbai, India, said she is so distraught that she is often tempted to end her life. “We have been struggling to make ends meet since the unexpected collapse of my husband’s computer business. Our visas have expired and we have no money to renew them. We are living on handouts,” said Fatima, a UAE resident for almost three decades now.
Originally known as Kanchan, Fatima married Bangladeshi Zubair Kamran in 1999 shortly after embracing Islam.
“Life was good. There was never any dearth of anything,” she recalls. “But as luck would have it, in 2017 Zubair suffered a huge loss from which he could never recover. His computer business folded and we had to dig into our savings to keep the kitchen fire burning. Now we are down to our last dirhams. My husband and eldest son want to take up a job to support the family but nobody wants to hire them as their residence visas have expired,” she said. “I take classes at a centre in Ajman and get food coupons in return. They also helped us pay our bills when our utility services were disconnected,” said Fatima.
“We are desperate for help and it pains us to see our children on the verge of dropping out of school. They are bright and don’t deserve to sit at home,” she said.