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Emmanuel Marcel Landa, a Congolese asylum seeker, was found dead on Friday (21st of September 2012) in the accommodation centre at Mosney, Co. Meath. Details of his death are unclear but it is suspected that he died as a result of persistent heart trouble. He was 62 and had been in the asylum process for seven years having arrived in 2005. It is believed that he is the 49th or 50th person to die in the system of Direct Provision since 2000.

Mr. Landa served as a Diplomat for Zaire to Argentina under President Mobutu who was over thrown in 1997. He was in the asylum process in Ireland for 5 years before being served with a deportation order more than a year ago. On the 14th of July 2011 he was part of a deportation flight to the Democratic Republic of Congo but this flight was turned back as the flight did not have permission to fly in Algerian air space. During this deportation attempt, Mr. Landa suffered a heart attack in Dublin Airport. He has suffered two more heart attacks since then, receiving treatment in Beaumont Hospital on both occasions.

Mr Landa was last seen on the morning of Thursday 20th September 2012 and concern grew when he did not arrive to collect his medication from the doctor. His chalet was accessed by staff. He was pronounced dead at the scene. He is survived by his wife and four children who are still living in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Commenting on Mr. Landa’s death, Sue Conlan, CEO of the Irish Refugee Council, said “The impact of long delays, lengthy residence in Direct Provision accommodation and the real threat of deportation may well have been a contributory factor in Mr. Landa’s untimely death. It is important that the Department which oversees the accommodation of asylum seekers takes the opportunity to review all of these matters.”  

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