Saturday, June 25, 2022

Inside British Asylum Seekers Hotel in Rwanda with gift shop, volleyball and free cigarettes

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Asylum seekers being flown to Rwanda from the UK for the first time this week will have access to a gift shop, volleyball court and computer suites, while being fed three times a day

The first group of asylum seekers to be flown to Rwanda will arrive this week – and be given a warm welcome at a resort-style hotel.

As part of the government’s controversial resettlement policy, the central African country will be the destination of 150 migrants who entered the UK illegally.

The decision, which saw a legal challenge rejected by the Supreme Court, was widely condemned, with even Prince Charles calling the move “appalling”.

But the fate that awaits them 4,000 miles away in Rwanda stands in stark contrast to the dreary detention and processing centers at home.

The Hope Hotel in the capital, Kigali, is a four-story, 50-room hotel set amid lush green lawns, with jacaranda plants scenting the air, while palm trees sway in the breeze.

They receive toiletries, are well fed at the restaurant with three meals a day, while a volleyball court is built outside just for them.

There is also a ‘suggestion box’ where they can voice their grievances if they have any, while a number of new washing machines have been installed along with computers in dedicated business areas. There’s even a free gift shop on-site.

And all at a cost of £60 a day, topped up by the UK government as part of the £120million deal to ‘outsource’ the processing of asylum claims in Rwanda.

Bakini Ismael, 34, is the manager of Hope Hotel and he can only help to take care of all the needs of the migrants.

He told the Daily Mail: “We want to make them happy here – we will welcome them as if they were paying guests on holiday in Africa.

“Everything is ready for her. We’re going to give out free cigarettes and we’ve built nice pavilions in the garden for them to smoke because we want them to have some joy in their lives.

“We will offer them everything they could wish for.”

All of this is literally miles away from the UK deportation centers where the migrants on the deportation list “without the right to be in the UK” are being held under tight security after being arrested by immigration police.

A Rwandan government spokesman has confirmed they are being treated well, saying: “The migrants are not being detained. You don’t do that to guests.

“They will not be prisoners, but will be able to leave and enter the Hope Hotel whenever they wish.”

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There are two other hotels poised to receive an influx should the Hope Hotel flood, including the Rouge by Desir, which has a swimming pool and rooms with stunning mountain views, and the Hallmark, which has 20 villas with private gardens. They were booked in the block by the British government until October.

Denis Bizimungu, Managing Director of Rouge by Desir, is pleased with the prospect of a new group of visitors, as is Mr. Ismael.

He told the Mail: “We will try to make them forget the problems that caused them to leave their country.

“We want to make sure they never get the idea of ​​crossing the sea by boat again. We want their hearts to be filled with joy in Rwanda.”

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