Income versus expensesYemeni families are drowning in despair [Archives:2004/784/Business & Economy]

October 25 2004

Mahyoub Al-Kamaly
Many Yemeni families find themselves drowned in a sea of problems and lack of job opportunities. These families are looking for opportunities in a desert environment void of stability and prosperity, as well as negative modes of behaviour in home and society.
Though the advent of Ramadan, the month of fasting, brings with it some job opportunities mitigating the burden of unemployment and poverty, the rise in living cost requires more of work and movement for securing the families consumption needs.
Many Yemeni families ascribe the causes of their suffering to the family provider, whose mind is dominated over by chewing qat, which costs the family at least about $200 a month.
A householder says she has been forces to sell bread during the month of Ramadan in order to be able to meet requirements of the family and because her husband wants to chew qat and he is addicted to the habit and therefore she works to help him in securing family needs.
She adds that the problem is not confined to the husband only for there are other reasons that double the problems of the family in the Yemeni society, especially that the state levies more taxes and customs.
Traffic police demands from you costs of qat, the security man in the street also asks you for the same thing and that this could include all people with whom one is dealing in his life.
Yemeni families also complain of the many requirements and needs of daily life of the family. Nevertheless many families manage in Ramadan to procure more income through choosing new work opportunities to increase their income to meet their living needs, hoping to have the month of the Ramadan present the whole year.
Such wishes do not solve the economic problems of the family particularly under local, Arab and international changes as well as the winds of globalization.
According to the course of events, job opportunities are temporarily available during the month of Ramadan because they are works created by workers themselves and practice by themselves.
Among such jobs are the selling of vegetables and fruits and cooking some kinds of food. Those people view the opportunities available in Ramadan are temporary and would not form a solution to sufferings of the Yemeni family. Thus the Yemeni family has to receive urgent assistance from the government and partners of development to help it gain permanent work opportunities to be able to improve their life and face its present circumstances.