Over 1,300 African Migrants Gather Outside New York City Hall over Promise of Green Cards

Immigrants rally at City Hall Park outside City Hall in New York on Tuesday, April 16, 202
AP Photo/Cedar Attanasio

Roughly 1,300 African migrants gathered outside New York City Hall on Tuesday over what some believed were promises of a green card or work visa if they appeared.

“Only 250 people were allowed inside for the 10 a.m. hearing, while the hundreds of others who flocked downtown were left outside in a park, where footage showed them chanting and cheering,” noted the New York Post.

The migrants were mostly from countries in West Africa and Guinea. Speaking to the NY Post, some say they were lured to city hall by an activist group promising they’d receive work visas or green cards if they appeared.

“They told me that they would help me to get a work permit and a green card if I came here today,” said 44-year-old Amadou Sara Bah, who migrated from Guinea in November.

Bah had applied for a work permit in March but became stressed over the five-month waiting period. He and his friends had been waiting on a bench near city hall for several hours.

“There are many people here and we don’t know how to get the help they told us would be here,” he told the NY Post. “I came here for a green card. I’m looking for help.”

Dial Lochitlio, a 19-year-old from Guinea, said that “elders in the community” told him to come to city hall in search of an asylum.

“They told us to be here at this time on this date and they would give us more information,” he said

Assitan Makadii of the organization African Communities Together said he went to city hall after learning migrants were lured there under false pretenses.

“They received some miscommunications, so we are here to provide clarification,” Makadii said.

“They don’t have nothing and they deserve everything because they are human. We are all human,” Makadii added. “They don’t have a place to go. As you can see I don’t think [the city housing is] happening because they’re all here because they don’t have a place to sleep.”

The joint hearing from the City Council’s Committee of Immigration and Committee on Hospitals discussed the experiences of migrants in the shelters to “understand how the [Adams] Administration is addressing language access barriers, cultural competency challenges, health needs, and other roadblocks” that migrants face.

One of the key issues has been overcoming language barriers, especially from a continent like Africa, which contains nearly 3,000 languages.

“This is mostly an issue that belongs to the federal government. They need to do better at providing training in these languages,” Manuel Castro, commissioner of the Mayor’s Office on Immigrant Affairs, told the council.

“Early on in the situation with the arrival of asylum seekers, it was primarily Venezuelan, Ecuadorians and other Spanish-speaking asylum seekers. But we started seeing more people from across the world arrive, so there’s a bit of an adjustment period that we’re undergoing,” Castro added.

Paul Roland Bois directed the award-winning Christian tech thrillerEXEMPLUM, which can be viewed for FREE on YouTube or Tubi. “Better than Killers of the Flower Moon,” wrote Mark Judge. “You haven’t seen a story like this before,” wrote Christian Toto. A high-quality, ad-free rental can also be streamed on Google PlayVimeo on Demand, or YouTube Movies. Follow on X @prolandfilms or Instagram @prolandfilms. 


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