Those who take advantage of the UAE's amnesty programme can come forward by October 31 without fines or criminal charges
A Philippines national has reportedly had AED 1.08 million ($294,000) in visa overstay fines waived by the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs (GDRFA) in Ras Al Khaimah, according to local media.
“She had entered the country on a visit visa in 1985. She worked as a housemaid with a GCC national as per a legal residency visa in the first two years, but turned into an illegal resident since then,” the Khaleej Times quoted Brigadier Hassan Sultan Al Nuaimi, executive director of GDRFA-RAK as saying.
“She was supposed to pay AED 1.08 million in fines against her 31-year illegal stay, but all fines were dropped due to the ongoing amnesty,” he added.
According to the newspaper, three other illegal residents in RAK had significant fines waived off as part of the ongoing amnesty programme.
Among them was an unidentified woman who owed AED 228,000 ($62,074) in fines, another resident who owed AED 528,200 ($143,805) in fines and an Asian illegal resident – identified only as P.S. – that had a AED 300,000 ($81,676) fine for overstaying his visa by eight years waived.
"This amnesty is a life jacket that will help me swim to the beach and be safe again," he told the newspaper. "I am planning to fly home and work there. I could not find a proper or well-paid work during my illegal stay."
The UAE’s amnesty programme, which began on August 1, allows those who who entered the UAE illegally or overstayed their visas to come forward by October 31 without being fined or charged if they choose to leave the country voluntarily.
The amnesty also grants those looking for employment a six-month visa to find a job. It excludes, however, those who are "blacklisted" or with legal cases pending