Meet Gaza’s first girl taxi driver

GAZA: Palestinian mother-of-five Nayla Abu Jubbah launched a small revolution this week by changing into the first feminine taxi driver within the deeply conservative Gaza Strip.
Within the impoverished Palestinian territory, ladies have the identical authorized rights as males to drive a car, however in apply the commerce of taxi driver has been solely male — till now.
“In the future I used to be speaking with a buddy who works as a hairdresser and I stated to her: ‘What would you say if we began a taxi service for ladies?’ She stated it was a loopy thought,” the 39-year-old informed AFP.
The Israeli-blockaded territory was struggling 50 p.c unemployment even earlier than the Covid-19 pandemic.
After consuming a steaming cup of tea in her residence, the social work graduate in a scarf places on a face masks and marches to her automobile parked outdoors.
After slotting her smartphone into its holder and giving a toot on the horn for present, she begins the engine and is off on the roads of Gaza, the place the Islamist Hamas motion has dominated for greater than 13 years.
Abu Jubbah doesn’t cruise the streets for fares, taking solely advance bookings.
“I go away my residence and I’ll choose up my purchasers, to convey them for instance from the hairdressing salon to a marriage,” she says.
She purchased the car together with her inheritance when her father died.
“I stated to myself at some point that I wanted to benefit from the automobile, to place it to work,” she stated. “Therefore the mission of a taxi service fully for ladies, to place them comfy.”
At present she is driving by way of the streets of Gaza Metropolis to choose up 27-year-old Aya Saleem for a purchasing journey.
“We reside in a conservative society. So after I noticed that there was a taxi firm particularly for ladies… I felt a sort of freedom”, says Saleem.
She wears a protracted brown tunic, beige scarf and a pale blue masks and carries a trendy bag.
“After I’m with a lady, I really feel snug… I really feel freer after which we are able to speak,” she says, including that ladies’s taxi companies are consistent with sharia, the Islamic code which Hamas promotes within the Gaza Strip.
Saleem is delighted with the thought and hopes to see extra feminine taxi drivers on Gaza’s roads quickly.
Abu Jubbah says she desires to develop her enterprise.
“A lady known as me lately to inform me that she wished to work as a taxi driver by my facet,” she stated.
“I informed her that we’d speak once more however I have already got the sensation that the mission will achieve momentum.”

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