Saudi uses life savings, borrows to save ill expat

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ExpatA Saudi man used his life savings and had to borrow on top of what he has to save the life of a seriously ill Bangladeshi worker he had hired illegally while visiting the Gulf kingdom to perform Haj (pilgrimage), a newspaper said on Saturday.

The mass circulation Okaz Arabic language daily described what Abdullah Al Rouqi has done for his worker as “a rare case of faithfulness,” adding that the Bangladeshi is suffering from brain tumor and has been in hospital for more than three months.

It said the expatriate, Mahboub Al Alam, underwent two surgical operations and that Rouqi had already paid nearly SR80,000, including SR20,000 he had saved and SR30,000 as a loan. The rest was raised through donations from friends and relatives of the Saudi man, who lives in the western town of Huda Al Cham.

Okaz said Rouqi illegally hired Alam nearly seven years ago after the Bangladeshi performed pilgrimage and overstayed in the oil-rich country.

When the government announced a general amnesty for illegal migrants this year, Rouqi tried to give him a legal job but tests showed Alam had brain cancer.

“I am now trying to borrow and raise more money as he needs chemical treatment after the two operations…I have an ethical responsibility towards this faithful man and my conscience does not allow me to abandon this responsibility,” Rouqi said.

“I need help now that I have spent all my life savings….we need help from all benevolent people to finance the treatment of this man.”

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