IRELAND has always been a home to refugee populations. For many generations, Ireland has received so many people from around the world.
Some stayed on and others left for pastures they presumed would be greener. Can you think of a place greener than the Irish landscape? Nevertheless, people flee to certain desirable destinations depending on what lies ahead of them. In some c. For example, the years of the Troubles in the North would prevent them from sailing to the docks of Belfast or Larne. After the Vietnam War, the Troubles in the North were at their peak but refugees escaping that country by sea ended up here. In 1979 and 1980, the largest group of the Vietnamese refugees was resettled in Craigavon.

Well over a hundred years before the Troubles, Huguenots were fleeing religious persecution in France. Thousands went to Holland and hundreds moved to Ireland. Jewish people also fled the Russian empire in the late 19th century to settle in Belfast and other parts of the North. Migration is a very personal story. Many people left Europe during the first and second world wars to find peace in Ireland and when many of these migrants arrived, some changed their names.


The news that Mo Farah is in reality Hussein Abdi Kahin is therefore no news. Yes, he says he was trafficked to the UK from Somaliland, the country that neighbours the then war-ravaged Somalia. He came as a child and the journey was made with a name that did not belong to him but of another person who is actually still alive. Mo is coming clean about his secret and personal story.

The reality is this: he is not the only one. When it comes to migration, only the wearer of the shoe can describe their story –  no-one else – and for a person who came from a country that is spitting distance from another nation in full civil strife, people should cut him some slack over these revelations. When he was winning all those glorious athletics medals, he was a super hero, super human. Now, internet trolls want to strip him down. They are demanding that his knighthood title of sir should be revoked, as if that would change Hussein Abdi Kahin’s life. We will continue to know this champion as Mo.

If we stick to genealogies of ruling families, for example, we will find that those putting the royal honours and titles around your neck have themselves a heap of alien stories. The stock of the British royal family is littered with histories of other monarch connections in Europe and other new entrants far across the Atlantic, Meghan Markle for example.
The story of Mo’s disclosure about his real identity will definitely have monumental legal consequences. Many migrants who have lived with identities that is not theirs will cite the Mo analogy. This is profound because those who fear to say who they are can now do this openly because the Home Office has not announced any action against Mo and if it stays that way, that is good and so be it.
Meanwhile, we are all still waiting for the PSNI and the Coroner to be brave and tell the waiting public the truth about what happened to young Noah Donohoe.