Emirati man offers to pay 9-year-old Iraqi boy's school fees after seeing viral video

Mustafa appeared to be shivering with cold as he helped his father sell fruit

Sharjah Sport TV correspondent Ali Al Kalabani (L) with Mustafa (R) in Basra Market. Credit: Screenshot
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An Emirati man who saw a viral video about a young boy in Basra has offered to pay all his school and university fees, plus his health insurance.

Nine-year-old Mustafa appeared to be shivering with cold in the video by Sharjah Sport TV, which showed him studying and helping his father sell fruit on the street.

The channel's correspondent, Ali Al Kalabani, interviewed the Iraqi boy during a live broadcast from a market last week.

Mustafa said that he felt he had to help his father earn more money for their family.

“I’m studying in year 3. I’m helping my family by selling fruits in the market. I’m first in my class in school as I love studying and want to be a military officer in the future,” he said.

“I don’t like work but have to help my father.”

After helping his father for hours, Mustafa goes home to do more studying.

The Emirati man, who did not want to be named, contacted Sharjah Sport's Al Kalabani to say he wanted to cover all of the boy's educational expenses, as well as his health insurance.

“The Emirati philanthropist will cover all expenses of Mustafa. He is ready to pay all fees and expenses even if Mustafa wanted to finish his study outside Iraq,” said Al Kalabani in a follow-up video.

“Mustafa will be moving from a government school to a private school. The philanthropist will pay all fees all the way to university and even after that.”

The correspondent then went to Mustafa's house in Basra and told his family the happy news.

The child hugged him and spoke with the Emirati man on the phone in the recorded video.

“Thanks for your kind gesture,” said Mustafa's father, who was not named in the video.

“Mustafa comes to help me in the market as soon as he finishes school. It is a generous gesture and not a surprise that it is coming from Emirati people.”

Updated: January 20, 2023, 6:42 AM