A Port Elizabeth woman who was imprisoned in Saudi Arabia has described how leaving behind her two siblings was the hardest thing she has had to do.
Desai siblings Huda Mohammad Desai, 34, and Shah Waliyullah Desai, 28, returned home on Monday afternoon after spending almost a year behind bars in Jeddah.
The two – along with their two other siblings Yumna Desai, 27, and Shah Waseeullah Desai, 24 – were detained at the Zabhan Military Prison in Jeddah on November 22 last year.
The siblings’ father Nazier Desai said the four had been detained after someone reported them and they were falsely accused.
Although never formally charged, it is understood they were detained under a law implemented by secret police who answer to the royal family.
According to the law, someone who is reported can be detained without being charged for up to a year
An emotional Huda, tears flowing, said shortly after their arrival at the Port Elizabeth International Airport: “The hardest part was leaving my brother and sister behind.
“I am very angry today. have an eight-year-old daughter. It’s been 11 months since I’ve spoken to her. She refused to talk to me or even hug me when I came back home.”
The family was informed about a month ago about the two siblings’ release. Nazier, said plans were afoot to secure the release of the Yumna Waseeullah.
Addressing the media, Nazier said: “Your support here today, really means a lot to us, because it will assist us in securing the release of the other two children.”
The siblings’ youngest sibling Safa 19 said: “The feeling is overwhelming to see them, after 11 months. It was almost one year. They did not know what freedom was, and we could live in freedom every day. Words cannot describe what I feel right now.”