The Mogán mayor, Onalia Bueno, warned yesterday during a council meeting about minor migrants still living in hotels in the holiday resort of Puerto Rico.
The day when tourists will return is approaching fast, while migrants still live in two hotels in the municipality, warns Bueno.
Bueno met with the vice minister for social rights from the government of the Canary Islands this week and was given promises that the migrants are to be moved by the first week in June.
Can’t make such a promise
That’s a promise not likely to be upheld. The general directorate for the protection of children has pointed out that a fixed date can’t be set since the minors can only be moved when appropriate resources are in place.
This message wasn’t well-received by Bueno, saying she will take the matter to the courts because the living conditions at the Puerto Bello hotel is unsuitable for accomodating children.
«It’s broken and doesn’t even meet the requirements to accommodate adults,» the mayor said to Canarias 7.
Most of the damages to the hotel has been caused by the minors themselves.
Mayor Onalia Bueno says the minor migrants has to leave the hotels now. Photo: Municipality of Mogán
The neighbours of the hotel have complained about the throwing of items such as bottles, furniture, appliances and rocks from the balconies at Puerto Bello.
At times these objects have been thrown so far that they end up inside the surrounding complexes. Neighbours we’ve spoken with claim to be afraid of leaving their buildings because of it.
Residents who have organized under the platform «Save tourism in Mogán» (Salvemos El Turismo en Mogán) has held multiple protests in Puerto Rico.
Residents in Puerto Rico protesting against the accomodation of minor migrants at hotels in Puerto Rico. Some of the protestors also held up signs against illegal immigration, but the speeches were about the hotels and tourism. Photo: Canariavisen
276 minors in Mogán
Until recently, minors were also living at Hotel Tamanaco in Puerto Rico, but this complex is now empty.
There are about 2700 minor migrants in the Canary Islands at the moment. Some 530 of those are accommodated by the municipalities themselves, and about 500 are housed in hotels in the south of Gran Canaria.
According to the municipality of Mogán, 276 minor migrants live in Mogán now: 106 at the Hotel Carlota and 170 at Puerto Bello.
Protests against the hotel accomodation for minor migrants in Puerto Rico:
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«They have to leave Puerto Rico now»
Mayor Onalia Bueno has said that Puerto Bello is the reception centre with the most conflict. The migrants have caused a lot of the damage done to the hotel.
«We can imagine the problems with conflicts in these areas while tourists are living next door. They have to leave Puerto Rico now so we can reactivate the tourism we had before the pandemic,» Bueno said.
The municipality has threatened with fines for the hotels due to alleged violations of local laws and regulations, mainly because the hotels are not being used for tourism purposes.
The Canary Islands government responded by signing a new law on the 23rd of December last year, allowing the government to use hotels as accommodation for minor migrants when necessary.