Ireland’s intake of refugees continues to gather steam as hotels ostensibly opened to service the ailing tourism industry have pivoted towards servicing the Great Plantation.
The Holiday Inn at Dublin Airport, the fourth largest in the country costing €50 million to construct, has decided to let all of its 421-bedrooms to the housing of asylum overflow from Baleskin Direct Provision Centre in Finglas.
Opened just last year and owned by Pakistani born hotel tycoon Jalaluddin Kajani, it was announced yesterday that Mr Kajani’s company JMK had completed a deal with the Department of Children to provide for those seeking international protection.
Not the first company to stick its fingers in the taxpayer’s pocket, the Pakistani businessman’s company is originally based in the UK but with a lick of paint and taking the name John instead of Jalaluddin gives a thankful breath of diversity to the Refugee Industry.
Owning a fleet of hotels including the soon to be opened Hampton by Hilton as well as the Waterford Marin and O’Connell Street’s Holiday Inn, the move could be the firing shot in a post-covid rush to convert Ireland’s neglected hotel stock.
Similar to the previous commandeering of hotel stock for largely Roma gypsy accommodation around the Gardiner and Talbot Street region, an early warning sign that the hotel was to be converted was an inability to book rooms in advance due to mention of an ‘exclusive contract’
Overall the numbers of asylum seekers entering Ireland has increased year on year, rising by fifty percent from around 6000 in 2017 to over 9000 in 2020. With over 3000 arriving ‘since October’ one expects the numbers to break five figures soon if it has not already.
Thankfully coming out of a pandemic with inflation on the rise, giving an unknown number of illegal aliens residency and being saddled with debt as interest rates are about to be hiked and with housing pressures bubbling over and a war on the horizon, we should be glad that Pakistani businessmen and the State are doing their best to make sure the greasy tills keep dinging their merry notes.
We may only be getting out of lockdown but our asylum industry and hangers on are truly gearing up.
Thank you Roderic O’Gorman for your service.