happy | 

Dad forced out of Dublin home following racist attacks moves into new house

Emmanuel Chris Enoch and his wife and four children were forced to flee their house in Dromcarra, Tallaght in January

Emmanuel during his sit in last January

Neil Fetherstonhaugh

A dad and his family who were forced out of their Tallaght home because of ongoing racist attacks has thanked The Sunday World and other media for highlighting his story and helping him get another house.

Emmanuel Chris Enoch and his wife and four children were forced to flee their council house in Dromcarra in January when attackers armed with a knife and using a hammer smashed open the door. His family escaped without serious injury and took refuge in a local church.

However, when they were later asked to vacate the church, they staged a sit-in at South Dublin County Council’s offices in February as they said they had nowhere else to go.

Emmanuel claimed the council had rejected an appeal for an urgent transfer to another house on the grounds that they could not safely return to their home.

Now, however, Emmanuel said he has now been given a new house.

“I was given a new place, just last week," he said.

"It’s in Lucan, far away from where the trouble was. It’s good news, all the pressure paid off.

"Initially they (the council) said no, the only option I had was to go back to that same place (in Tallaght).

“But after all the media (attention) we have been given a new house, a council house. I'm happy. All my family are here, my wife and four kids. And they don't have to change school because it's not far.

“We had to move from the house (in Tallaght). There was no way we could go back there,” he added.

Emmanuel told Sunday World at the time that the most recent incident in January followed years of serious attacks on his family, that saw his children having stones thrown at them, racist graffiti daubed on the walls and the family car being set on fire.

"This has been an ongoing thing," he added. "In July last year the car was set on fire in front of the house. Each of my kids have had stones thrown at them.

"Racist slogans were painted on the walls telling us to get out, we're not wanted here.

"These attacks had been going on for years but that night in January was the most frightening," Emmanuel said.

"It was about 8.45 that evening and I saw a young man by the door. He was looking in and sometimes we have people coming to do a delivery so I went to open the door.

"The moment I opened the door I saw a knife coming at my head. I tried to push the door closed but I didn’t realise there were other guys taking position behind the car.

"The moment the door was a little bit open, they came at it with a hammer.

"I was screaming for help and my kids came down and we were all trying to push the door closed."

Emmanuel said their ordeal lasted for more than 20 minutes before the gardai arrived.

The assailants fled and later, when the council arrived, they boarded up the house.

“I asked the council where you are going to take us, because we can’t stay here," Emmanuel added.

"They said they would get back to me but it was one phone call after another. The following night we left to stay in the church."

Emmanuel revealed that they had later been asked to vacate the church but that the landlord “reconsidered” after reading about the story in newspapers.

The family eventually spent a total of 90 days in the church while going to various friend’s houses to shower in the evenings.

“And at the weekend we had to take our clothes somewhere to get them washed because there is no facilities in the church,” he added.

Emmanuel has been in Ireland for 11 years now and the attacks had been ongoing issues.

“But the incident last January was the height of it,” he said. “This was the one that was really too close for comfort.

“As I told you before there were (other) burglaries, break-ins, four or five times, cars set on fire, and all that but this one was just too close. We said no, we had enough, we just could not take it anymore.

“But we are happy now and I’d like to thank you, and the media and people for their support."

South Dublin County Council said they do not comment on individual cases.

Today's Headlines

More Irish News

Download the Sunday World app

Now download the free app for all the latest Sunday World News, Crime, Irish Showbiz and Sport. Available on Apple and Android devices

WatchMore Videos