By WALAA HAWARI | ARAB NEWS
Published: Sep 14, 2011 23:04 Updated: Sep 14, 2011 23:04
RIYADH: Saudi women have voiced reservations against recruiting domestic helpers from Morocco as suggested by the chairman of the Saudi recruitment committee.
This is due to an old belief that Moroccan women use black magic to lure men to marry them. Some Saudi women urged the Shoura Council to intervene, while others threatened to quit their jobs to look after their homes if housemaids from the country were brought in.
Najla, a 32-year-old teacher at a private school, said she felt threatened by the news, pointing out that Moroccan women are known for being pliant and willing to adjust to varying situations, and this posed a threat to a working wife who is not at home most of the day.
Raja is a housewife who hopes the move falls through. She said Moroccan women are known for their black magic and could use it in Saudi homes. “It is better to be safe than sorry,” Raja said.
“It all depends on the upbringing of the man,” said Nuha, a physician and mother of three young children. She expressed support for the initiative to bring in Moroccan workers and pointed out that any threat can come from workers of any nationality and not only one.
Sawsan, a 40-year-old housewife, sees no harm in the initiative as she believes Saudi women should have confidence in themselves. “If a woman knows how to keep her husband satisfied, nothing can threaten her home.”
Sameer, a divorced businessman, believes that “black magic” is the key phrase frightening people. “However, other nationalities, as we have experienced in the Kingdom, use black magic to control families.”
“I am against having a live-in domestic helper in general,” said Majed, a single lawyer, adding that having a stranger live in anyone’s home is not healthy and can cause many problems, especially in marriages. “It is like bringing in an alien seed and planting it in your garden. No one can predict the outcome.”
Umm Fahad, a 27-year-old mother of three, has worked with a Moroccan maid for seven years, and she thought it was the best experience.
“She was so clean, quiet and kind, and since she left I have been suffering with workers of other nationalities,” she said, adding that at least the maid spoke the same language and understood Saudi traditions.
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