ISSN 2330-717X

Hostage In Doha – OpEd


Your writer has classmate from college years. We graduated from Mechanical Engineering Department of METU in 1973. My schoolmate worked for many years in the Russian and Middle East construction sites of Turkish Contractor companies Stfa, Enka, Tekfen, Gama. His engineering knowledge, construction site experience was excellent. Between years 2008- 2010, he was the site manager of a power plant construction in Qatar, of a major Turkish construction company in Doha. Within the scope of his job execution, he met with a new subcontractor engineer from Turkey.

My friend gave him a small subcontracting job and he was pleased with his work. Power plant construction was completed in 2010.

In 2010, together he founded a small contracting company with this Turkish entrepreneur. They named the new company by combining the first syllable of both surnames … Qatar W.L.L. They started the company, along with a residential construction in Qatar Doha, they took the job of air conditioning / ventilation A / C. They started work, borrowed in the Doha domestic market for purchasing necessary material and equipment.

They brought workers from Turkey. In the end, they completed the job, the houses were delivered and they prepared the work completion documents. With this document, they would receive their job completion certificate and withdraw their last money from the bank. Then they would pay their debts to the local Doha market with the money they receive, and then share the remaining money.

But that was not the case.

As soon as the other Turkish partner received the certificate of “completion” from the local administration, he went to the bank, withdrew all the remaining money, put it in the bag in cash, took the next plane without delay, and left the country in a very short time. We understand that their partnership agreements allow the other partner to act in such an unethical way. He did not stop in Turkey, he went to one of the Turkish Republics in Central Asia, with no international criminal exchange, and he lost his track.

My friend is now hostage in Doha for the last six years.

The creditor supplier companies complained to local authorities.

Fortunately he’s not in jail, but he can’t leave the country. He is now a hostage in the country. He now works in a local engineering company. In order to get out of the country, he has to pay the debts of $ 30-40m. His company is in the liquidation process but he cannot pay its debts. At old age, making money is not so easy. From time to time we are on the Internet for chatting.

What’s going on in the job market? Such situations are most likely to occur in our geography without any ethical concerns.

Does a partner do this to another? Our ethics-culture-business approach allow such misapplications.

Without paying the debt to local suppliers, employees should not have the opportunity to leave the country. Partners should be able to control each other very closely. The indigenous sponsor practice in Saudi Arabia was very much against to our minds but we now understand that it was necessary in the Middle east environment, a practice put enforced not in vain. Proper education and job training are essential to have good work ethic.

In Western Europe – in North America, there are few such cases. Felon can’t leave the country – Criminal people can’t escape. If s/he goes, her/his sanctions will be harsh.

It’s happening in our geography. The negative morality of the last years has spread everywhere. The sanction is almost non-existent. When writing a partnership agreement, your writer would say that it is useful to write the contract wording very carefully.

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Haluk Direskeneli

Haluk Direskeneli, is a graduate of METU Mechanical Engineering department (1973). He worked in public, private enterprises, USA Turkish JV companies (B&W, CSWI, AEP, Entergy), in fabrication, basic and detail design, marketing, sales and project management of thermal power plants. He is currently working as freelance consultant/ energy analyst with thermal power plants basic/ detail design software expertise for private engineering companies, investors, universities and research institutions. He is a member of Chamber of Turkish Mechanical Engineers Energy Working Group.

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