7DAYS reader offers to help clear maid’s debt in Abu Dhabi
A housemaid who faced jail if she didn’t pay Dhs5,500 to her employer is to walk free thanks to a 7DAYS reader.
A Dubai-based businessman got in touch after reading about the Filipina’s plight following a court hearing, and offered to clear the debt. The American businessman said he wanted to remain anonymous, but was happy to pay the money to ensure the maid did not go to prison.
“I don’t want my name out there, but I wanted to help out because I felt bad for her,” the businessman told 7DAYS.
An Abu Dhabi court ruled that the Filipina, who ran away from her job, had to pay her employer Dhs5,500 to cover the cost of hiring her.
The woman, who has been receiving legal help from the Filipino embassy, told 7DAYS she had no chance of paying the money by the end of this week, and feared she would be sent to jail.
The maid’s supporters were delighted yesterday to hear the good news.
“It is fantastic news. She only had a few days to pay or she would have been brought to court for non-payment. Now, we must hurry to pay the money so she can stay free,” said a source.
The woman is staying at a Filipino government shelter for runaway maids, located on the grounds of the country’s embassy in Abu Dhabi.
The embassy was yesterday coordinating with the businessman to submit the money to the court before the deadline later this week.
The woman, who said her Emirati employer worked her for 20 hours a day, fled to the Filipino embassy earlier this year. She also claimed she had not been paid for a month and a half when she fled.