Bahrain Tribune: They don’t want to see us working’
The government says there are 2,000 jobs and it is looking for people to fill them. Then why do not they employ us?” asked Syed Hashem Khalid, a bachelor in community service, from the University of Bahrain. “Give us decent jobs. We are all graduates. This is our way of highlighting our plight before the nation and the government,” Khalid told the Tribune during a protest against unemployment yesterday. Over 100 educated Bahrainis demonstrated for jobs outside the Civil Services Bureau. “It is just the beginning. We intend to protest till we are heard and each of us is employed,” they said. Al Wefaq Deputy Dr Hassan Abdali who addressed the gathering, later told the Tribune, “The Minister of Justice and Islamic Affairs, Shaikh Khalid bin Ali bin Abdulla Al Khalifa, is expected to make an announcement by Monday. I advised the jobless graduates to wait till then before they plan any other move.” Hussain Abdul Razool, who graduated in social science seven months ago and Sameer Iyad who graduated in social studies five years ago were unanimous in the strategy they would pursue. “If there are no jobs, then we are left with no option but to go on fast. All of us would go on fast at the same place.” Bahraini women echoed similar sentiments. Ibtisan said she graduated in Islamic studies from the university three years ago and had been jobless. Jenan, who graduated in business administration a year ago said, “I am qualified and willing to work. What use is my degree if I cannot be employed?” Lateefa Abdali graduated in geography about five years ago. “I have qualification but there is no job to suit it.” “His Majesty the King, Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa, sanctioned BD15 million to generate jobs. The government should use that money and create jobs. But somebody in there does not want us to be gainfully employed,” they alleged. Iyad said the Ministry of Education had given him a scholarship to do bachelor’s in social studies. “I graduated five years ago. I applied to the ministry. They said they sponsored my studies but had no job for me. What use is the scholarship and my degree if I cannot work?.” Another protester, Hashem Khalid said, “I need a job with a salary of at least BD300 because I am a graduate. The job can be in the ministry or public or private sector. I do not care.” He claimed that over 2,400 graduates were jobless. The Tribune found that there were vacancies in the Ministry of Electricity. A staffer at the Job Information Centre at the bureau said there were vacancies for electrical and civil engineers and tender specialists. There is a vacancy for a civil engineer in the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Information needs information specialists, she said. When the Tribune contacted the bureau, officials said they did not know about the protest. Abdulrahman Bomtih, an official, said he could see nothing from his office and came out of the bureau to see the protest.