Thursday, January 29, 2009

The New Irish

The countdown has started to the local and European elections in June and already some of the candidates in the running are showing promise.

One such candidate is Fine Gael's Mulhuddart candidate Adeola Ogusina, who is creating quite a degree of interest in the West Dublin area.

Adeola, a Nigerian national who has been living in Ireland for the past nine years, has already come up with a very sound proposals that could drastically improve the day-to-day lives of immigrants and the new Irish.

He said these sections of society are encountering serious problems because of strick proof-of-address requirements for commercial services such as bank accounts and car rental.

Adeola suggested that a simple but effective alternative would be to encourage immigrants to register to vote, and allow them to use the Garda vote confirmation form as proof of address.

"A large proportion of immigrants are sharing or renting accommodation and do not have much in the way of proof of address. This is causing them serious difficulties when they apply for commercial services which require a formal proof of address, such as opening a bank account or renting a car," he said.

"Many immigrants simply share a room or a flat, and therefore have no utility bills or registered letters with their name and address. And even when immigrants rent accommodation directly, many landlords prefer to keep utility bills in their own name."

He believes that by encouraging them to vote in the local elections, immigrants would be more inclined to take an interest in their surroundings and the local community.

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