Mataram, West Nusa Tenggara. Supiani binti Abdul Salam had worked in Khobar, Saudi Arabia, for less than a year before tragedy struck.
In July last year, just 10 months after getting a job in the kingdom as a domestic worker, the abuse began. She was whipped with a belt by her employer’s wife for not mopping the floor properly.
The woman later accused Supiani of leaving a bad smell in her bedroom when she cleaned it, and pushed her out a third-floor window.
“I blacked out,” Supiani, 26, told the Jakarta Globe at her home in Mataram recently. “When I woke up I was in hospital, where I’d been in a coma for a week.”
After she came out of the coma, her employer, Abdulrahman Najrani, moved her to a cheaper hospital. A week later, he drove her to the airport and sent her on a plane back to Jakarta — without paying her any of the 1,900 Saudi riyals ($500) that he owed her.
Supiani came forward with her story as migrant worker activists prepare to mark the one-year anniversary of the execution of Ruyati binti Sapubi, another Indonesian maid in Saudi Arabia.
Ruyati was beheaded on June 18 last year for killing her employer’s mother, reportedly because of the abuse she was subjected to by the elderly woman.
However, the Saudi authorities only notified Indonesian officials about the execution two days after is occurred, triggering criticism in Indonesia and prompting Jakarta to issue a moratorium on sending migrant workers to the kingdom until the fate of dozens of other Indonesians on death row there could be ascertained.