Fear of cops made expat fail 25 driving tests

Mustafa Picture: SUPPLIED

An Indian expat achieved his much cherished dream of driving in the UAE after failing 25 road tests and spending a decent fortune.

An overjoyed Mustafa sharing his experience with Emirates24|7 said how he had become a butt of a joke among his friends, who even had a local radio station pull a prank on him. Mustafa spent more than Dh10,000 in the last six years, but was determined to obtain a driver's licence.
The 39-year-old storekeeper, who works with Al Tamam Food Trading Company in Ajman, said it was primarily the fear of policemen that resulted in his failure.
“I failed  25 tests. After every failure, I had to start preparing for the next test date, which came only 50 days later. I spent more than Dh 10,000 and had to keep aside a good portion of my Dh1,400 monthly salary for the purpose. I have finally got my licence in the 26th attempt. I will give my family and friends a party after I get my next salary,” a joyous Musthafa said.
He said the reason for his repeated failure was his fear of Ajman policemen who sits in the instructors seat for the driving test.  “My blood pressure used to go up whenever I gave a road test. The instructors don’t speak much, they will just give directions to follow. Sometimes the vehicle would stop in the middle of the road when I lost grip of the clutches. I failed all the 25 tests for some minor mistakes. Also I was giving manual vehicle test, which is tougher than an automatic test.  My company requires a manual driving licence because the trading company pick up vehicles are all manual,” he said.
“Each year I could give only four tests. After every failure I had to attend five to six classes again with Majeed, my driving instructor, who told me several times not to worry and be bold in front the inspectors,” he added.
“Sometimes I would hear sounds from the accelerator, or I would violate lane change discipline, etc. However, the main problem was my tension and worry on seeing a policeman.” “I used to drive a motorcycle back home and now I am confident of driving a four wheel vehicle. I hope I will get a better job also now.”

“In between I also had to return to India for slip disc treatment,” Mustafa said and recalled how his roommates pulled one on him by alerting the RJ of SuperFM94.7 to give him a prank call. He was shocked to learn from the RJ that his driving licence file was missing from the Ajman Traffic Department and that he had to appear for another test. It was only later that I realised it was a way of my friends celebrating my victory.
“Many of my friends and relatives called to congratulate me after hearing my story on the radio. I am happy that despite frequent jibes and teasing, I have made it.”
Mustafa arrived in the UAE nine years ago and three years later started his efforts of obtaining a driver's licence. He finally passed on May 21, 2013. He says he does not know any other motorist who has failed so many times. 
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