A policeman’s widow struggles to feed her children
KANDAHAR CITY (Pajhwok): Shazia, the widow of a policeman, complains of multiple financial woes, saying they do not have food even for Sehri during the holy month of Ramadan.
Shazia’s husband was killed in a roadside bomb attack in southern Zabul province. She has since been forced to work to bring her children food and other necessities.
The 38 years old sells second-class clothes on roads in the Chaharso area of Kandahar City, the provincial capital.She believes her husband’s death.
In an exclusive interview with Pajhwok Afghan News, Shazia said her husband had sacrificed his life in a way that his body was charred beyond recognition.
However, no one has bothered inquired about the policeman’s family after his demise. Shazia’s spouse had been serving in the police force in Zabul province, where he was killed four years ago.
“Even before his death, our life was not that good, because my husband would spend several months in another province before coming home only for a few days,” she explains.
However, she drew solace from the fact her husband was alive. Shazia embraced all privations, thinking that her husband was doing his duty of protecting the people.
“It’s a four years old story. My husband would come home from his duty station in Zabulfor four to five days after every four months. But last time, he did not come home for several months.
“He was killed in a roadside bombing and his body was blown to pieces. I did not see his corpse,” says Shazia, trying to fight back her tears.
“Along with his colleagues, my husband was heading to help passengers whose bus had struck a roadside bomb. But their car was hit by another bomb and they were killed before reaching the passengers.”
Almost intuitively, she raisesher hands and prays: “God, put an end to the war in our country. Many families have been ruined and many women widowed. Bless our country with peace,”
Now Shazia is taking care of her two sons and two daughters.“Both I and my husband have friends and relatives, but none of them has helped us.”
“I have rented a ruined house for 1,300 afghanis a month. Earlier, I worked day and night to make handicrafts, but it was not a permanent job.”
Later, she started collecting used clothes from homes and selling them in the Chaharso bazaar. She has to take her younger son as Shazia goes to work.
The rest of her children stay a neighbor’s house.“I have to fastfrequently without taking any food at Sehri. We have also to endure the hot weather of Kandahar.”
Officials acknowledge the number of war victims is higher in Kandahar than in other parts of the country. Kandahar has been affected more by the conflict in past years.
Women Affairs Director Ruqia Achakzai says thousands of women in Kandahar are hit hard by the conflict, which killed their husbands, children and other relatives.She claims her department has always tried to help homeless and war-hit women find jobs.
The governor’s spokesman, Samim Khpalwak, agrees the war has brought many families, particularly women and children, untold miseries.He says the governor’s house has always encouraged wealthy people to help war-affected families.
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