DCU student Mehwish Saqib appeals refusal of her leave to remain application to the High Court

Aoife O'Brien

DCU University of Sanctuary student Mehwish Saqib has appealed a deportation order against herself and her family to the High Court.

Saqib and her husband along with their three children were initially issued with the deportation order on Wednesday October 30th.

They have appealed the deportation order to the High Court but a decision had not been made on the appeal at the time of print.

DCUSU and DCU students gathered outside the Department of Justice and Equality on Tuesday November 12th.

Speaking before the protest, Saqib spoke about her anger at the situation.

“I feel like it’s so unfair. Living in direct provision is really difficult…we are struggling to make a good future and contribute to society and they saw our struggle and they ignored it.”

Saqib and her family have been living in direct provision in Ireland for four and a half years and were initially placed in the Old Convent direct provision centre in Co Mayo, where their youngest son was born.

During their time in Mayo they were living in a shared house in the centre with three other families.

“It is very cramped there,” Saqib said. “Everything was done in the same room, we were eating and watching TV and sleeping in the same area.

“The laundry is full of clothes and the kitchen is too messy. I feel like I’m crying all the time because I live here and I can’t do anything about it,” she continued.

Saqib and her family applied for a transfer out of the direct provision centre in Mayo to Dublin so that they would have more opportunities and a year later the request was finally approved.

They now live in the direct provision centre in Mosney and while they have their own house they were presented with new difficulties.

“We are like a machine there. At 9 o’clock we have to pick the toiletries, if you don’t pick the toiletries then you can’t get them. At 3 o’clock we have to queue and ask for milk or bread or eggs or something,” she said.

Saqib said that she feels like they are expected to beg for everything that they need and described the constant routine as “humiliating”.

Despite her difficult experiences in direct provision Saqib still hopes to remain in Ireland.

“My hope is my children study here, we want them to make a life and career and have good jobs and have a good life,” she said.

Returning to Pakistan is not an option for the family according to Saqib who fears her family will be killed if they return.

Aoife O’Brien

Image Credit: Mehwish Saqib