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Monday, January 24, 2022

Qataris online rally to scrap bank debts

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Social media users in Qatar have called for the scrapping of debts in the Gulf country.

Citizens in Qatar asked for authorities to relieve the debts of families of the deceased, retired people, and the less fortunate in a new trend on Twitter.

So far, the trending hashtag has amounted to over 3000 tweets in a short period of time. Twitter users used the hashtag #ScrapLoanDebts in Arabic to call for debt alleviation nationwide.

Qatari media personality Hassan Al Sai participated in the trend, saying “after popular demand, it is now time for the decision to be enforced on banks.”

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Another Twitter user said “the demands are clear, the trend is speaking about unpaid debts of those who cannot pay off their loans. Banks already make billions yearly without taxes, the least they can do is to scrap debts for this group of the public. What’s the deal with people speaking as though its an alleviation of all debts?”

“The state is pumping a lot of money to maintain the country’s economy and the interest of banks from these funds is large and high, so #ScrappingLoanDebts is a beautiful response by the state and a wonderful model for society, and if the banks do not make their mark in #Qatar2022, then when?” said one Twitter user.

The trend was sparked after authorities in the UAE announced a move to relieve those who have taken bank loans of their debts.

In Qatar, Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani is known to take such bold moves to mark religious occasions, including Ramadan and Eid.

Last Ramadan, Sheikh Tamim personally paid QR 200 million to cover the balance of Qatar Charity’s Al Gharemin [the debtors] campaign, cancelling debts for thousands of citizens in the country.

In a tweet, QC confirmed it ended its debt campaign after managing to secure enough funds. The charity also said QR 200 million was donated, without providing further details.

News of the generous donation caused a buzz on social media where residents took to Twitter to praise the Amir for his gesture of goodwill.

“Emir Sheikh #TamimBinHamad contributes QR 200 million to support the campaign #AlGharmein. God bless him and guide his steps,” one Twitter user said minutes after the news was announced.

Another user said “how many families will now rejoice knowing that their debt has been cancelled. It has not only made them happy but all of us here in Qatar.”


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