Cahill ashamed government allowed it to happen

Pearl Dineen, a niece of the late Monsignor Hugh O’Flaherty, with her son Cormac Dineen, taking part some weeks ago in a community and business alliance protest outside the Legal Aid Board building in Caherciveen in support of the residents of the Skellig Star direct provision centre.
Picture: Valerie O’Sullivan

THE ongoing crisis at the troubled Skellig Star direct provision centre in Caherciveen is “a stain on all of us” for allowing the Department of Justice and Equality to transfer over 100 asylum seekers to an unsuitable building and location in the middle of a global pandemic, a Kerry councillor has charged.

Cllr Michael Cahill said the minister responsible should close the centre immediately as there has been more than sufficient time available to organise alternative accommodation.

He was commenting following confirmation this morning that residents at the facility had commenced a hunger strike to highlight what they claim is inadequate food and water supplies.

Cllr Michael Cahill: Horrified by the crisis

They have gone public to express concerns that their access to bottled water was very limited even though there has been a boiled water notice issued in Caherciveen due to worries about cryptosporidium in the supply chain.

“Are we a nation of savages that we would allow this treatment be dealt out to human beings who are in our care?” Cllr Cahill asked.

“Have the residents no rights? As if it was not bad enough that they were landed into undersized living quarters in an area with poor services, now their food and water provisions are being rationed it appears”.

Cllr Cahill said he is ashamed that the government – now led by his own Fianna Fáil party – would allow it to happen.

“I am horrified that any other citizens of my country would treat people they are being paid to look after in such a despicable manner,” he said.

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