Wearing his national team jersey, Isaac was one of thousands of migrant workers who headed to the fan zone after sunset to watch Sunday’s round of 16 match between France and Poland before England and Senegal took the lead. center stage.
Qatar has come under intense criticism from human rights groups for the treatment of its migrant workers, who along with other foreigners make up the majority of the population.
“It’s complicated,” said a young Kenyan traffic officer, who declined to give his name, when asked if he could stay after the final.
“I worked on the construction of the Lusail stadium and Al Zumama, I worked for a contractor, so you go where they send you, next week we could be under construction again. We worked in the summer when it was very hot, I was very tired all the time “, he pointed.
For Rahim, a Bangladeshi rideshare driver, his three and a half years in Qatar have been difficult, but there are no jobs in his hometown, so he feels he has no choice but to stay.
“I work seven days a week. First I have to pay the car to a company, it’s not mine, then I have to pay my food and my rent, and what’s left I send to my family,” Rahim said.
“I’m trying to save to go home, I haven’t seen my family in three and a half years (but) if I go home there is no job, so I have to have even more money,” he added.
Rahim said he would like to bring his wife and daughter to live with him in Qatar, but he does not earn enough money to do so, so they stayed in Bangladesh.
Many of the workers are dependent on their employers allowing them to stay in Qatar and the goal is to ensure they can stay in a job.
Jonathan, another Ugandan, isn’t really a fan of his job as a mechanic and would prefer to get an education, but he aims to be here long after the final.
“I’m going to stay until my contract ends,” he said.