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Old 30-04-2019, 09:55 PM
Pepe Pepe is offline
Senior PROC Member
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Playboy of Beggars Bush
Posts: 19,954

Interesting piece on Ellie Kisyombe

front page Sunday Times splash this week has suggested a more circuitous route to Ireland taken by Kisyombe.
This account places her as a student in Bristol university between 2007 and 2010, then returning to Malawi before getting a student visa in Ireland, then applying for UK asylum. It also has her applying for Irish asylum a year later than stated, followed by a lengthy stay in the UK.

Her supporters say it doesn’t matter how she got here, or when.

This chimes with our empathy for economic migrants like Michael and all the haunted Irish illegals down the years.

Many of us live messy, complicated lives and by definition, asylum seekers’ stories are even more complex and desperate. But where do we as a people expect immigration officials to draw the line, if at all, in arriving at such judgments?

The Sunday Times has come under heavy fire, laced with charges of racism, accused on social media of picking on a black candidate, of giving undue prominence to the story, of using an “unsympathetic” photograph (it was taken against a Social Democrats backdrop), and of publishing sensitive personal information that may have been leaked by someone in authority.

Kisyombe’s lawyers warned the paper that it was a criminal offence to identify an applicant for international protection without her consent.

The suggestion that out of hundreds of white, local election candidates, Kisyombe was singled out for nefarious reasons must be weighed against the fact that she had already received exceptionally broad, positive, national media coverage (including the cover photograph and lengthy interview in a recent Irish Times Saturday magazine) in which she happily co-operated.

We need to talk about these things. Where does the balance lie in such complex situations?

Should the Sunday Times have decided not to publish? Or to bury the story at the bottom of page six?

When a person runs for public office, are voters entitled to a straight account of their background regardless of its complexity and to make their minds up accordingly?
If details are not forthcoming, is it reasonable to expect that person to stand down until their status is established?
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