Ban mars prospects of amnesty seeker

DUBAI — For Egyptian national Ahmed Al Shareef, amnesty is anything but a blessing. Ahmed, who has been working in Dubai illegally for more than six months, regrets having approached the Follow-up and Investigation Section in Jumeirah.

By Mary Nammour (FOCUS ON AMNESTY)

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Published: Sun 29 Jul 2007, 8:22 AM

Last updated: Sun 5 Apr 2015, 3:21 AM

“I came on a visit visa to Dubai in October last year searching for a job in decoration and equipment installation. I came full with hopes and aspirations thinking that this big city would make my dreams come true. I wanted to secure a good life for my family back home.

“However, I spent a long time searching for a job,” narrates Ahmed. In his search for the job, Ahmed’s visit visa expired and he decided to stay on as an illegal resident. “I did not renew my visit visa because I had run out of money. I was desperately looking for a sponsor.

“In January, I got the job of a foreman. However, my illegal status made me live in a constant state of worry,” says Ahmed.

The amnesty made Ahmed hope that everything would be all right, eventually. “When I heard about the amnesty, I felt happy. I regained my hope of earning a good living for my kids and wife.

“Besides, I was feeling doubly lucky as my job application for a private assignment had been recently approved. I was honest with the manager and told him everything about my illegal status in UAE. He advised me to benefit from the amnesty and regularise my status. He promised me that he would give me the job after I corrected my documents,” he stated.

But Ahmed’s hopes were shattered. “I thought that through the amnesty, my problems would end. It never occurred to me that a ban of one year would be stamped on my passport.

“I heard that the ban would only be imposed on people who had infiltrated into the UAE, or on those reported absconding.

“But now I have to go back to Egypt and I will be denied entry to UAE for one year. I lost the job which took me almost nine months to find. It is a pity and I don’t know what to do!” he sighed.

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