Monday, 22 April 2019


I was delighted last week to meet with Lucky Khambule  a man who now lives in the town of Arklow, co Wicklow. Lucky was1.5 years in ‘direct provision’ before been given’ leave to remain’ in Ireland by the department of Justice. Lucky is a very striking presence who carries himself with dignity, respect for all and concern for those who remain in the unfortunate and unnecessary regime that limits their potential by means denying basic human rights.

There is no doubt in the future those who allowed the existence of Direct Provision will be held to account for a list of wrongs that it perpetuated. But, for the moment let us celebrate another brave human crossing the road in his home town on his journey to a life more fulfilling.

I chatted with Lucky for an hour after shooting this picture, over coffee. He is full of optimism for the future and what it can hold for those who like himself have so much to give to society wherever they are located. Lucky also  told me of his time a centre in rural Cork, where he and others went on strike in an effort to win concessions, and better conditions for those in the centre where he lived.
Today for Lucky the struggle continues, he is an activist with M.A.S.I. and on the day of the shoot he was wearing his MASI tee-shirt.Lucky spends a lot of time participating in the discourse around direct provision up and down the country. Below, for your information is a short excerpt from the about page on the  MASI website.

 MASI is the collective Movement of Asylum Seekers in Ireland, a platform for asylum seekers to join together in unity and purpose
    MASI seeks justice, freedom and dignity for all asylum seekers.
    MASI demands the end of direct provision, the right to work and education, and opposes deportation.
    MASI is independent: it is not an NGO, it is not affiliated to any NGO or political party.
    MASI is not funded; we depend on our own resources and raise our own funds as we can.
    In MASI, all are equal to each other; all are of equal value and deserving of equal respect and dignity.
    MASI is democratic and collective. All decisions are made collectively, through discussion and agreement.
    MASI has no ‘membership’. We are part of MASI through our commitment and contribution to the collective work of the movement.
    MASI has no organisational structures. Structures can become rigid and hierarchical. We decide on tasks according to the nature of each action, and according to who is able to commit the time and energy needed at that time.

It was a great pleasure to meet and talk with Lucky and to add his image to this series which aims to help in the awareness of the direct provision system outside of Ireland.
I look forward to meeting others such as him as I journey on through this process.
If you have recently been given leave to remain in Ireland after spending tome in dirct provision and you would like to take part in this project and add your voice to this facet of the direct provision story please contact me at
with thanks,
David Monahan

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