Being a full time student, you always look forward for a break where you can refresh and restart.
One of my greatest passions is travelling and exploring God's magnificent canvas.
#racism #corruption
#Thailand #Bangkok
#black #race
#ignorance #thaiembassy
So my two girlfriends and I agreed that this Chinese Golden Week, we will refresh by travelling to Thailand.
After a lot of hard working, between our demanding classes we managed to save enough for the trip.
#racism #corruption
#xenophobia #hate
#race #thaiembassy
So on October 02, 2019, two of my girl friends and I left Shanghai, China were we are studying for a vacation in Thailand.
Our flight was scheduled to leave at 1345hrs but it was delayed until 1655hrs which had us land at Bangkok-Suvarnabhumi airport at 2000hrs.
We were all exhausted already yet excited for the upcoming adventure.
Once in the airport, full of excitement, we started plotting and planning as we walked down to the immigration clearance. There, Caroline, my Kenyan friend had her yellow fever card stamped,
then at the same time, Aichi, my fellow Tanzanian was asked for hotel booking confirmation as well as return flight details. Of course she had them all.
After Aichi’s conformation, the immigration officer then asked us to go with her to a small open office space.
At that time, we did not have any worry in the world, so we followed her behind as we continued to plot and plan with giggles.
Once we got there we found a group of officers who asked us for the same details again. They then asked us to show them money we had
We did not, however, have cash as we are not in the habit of carrying around stacks of money, but rather have the money in our bank cards.
And that’s when it all began and all hell broke loose ... #hate #racism #corruption
#xenophobia #discrimination
#Thailand #Bangkok
The officers then asked us to fill in our information on a paper, which we did and then took us to another section which was quite a distance from where we were at.
On our way, we kept asking them to explain what the problem was but none of them replied
but instead all they had to say was, “follow me, this way please..”
In the office where we were taken to, we found other foreigners. The three of us were quite confused so we asked the others whom we had found why they were in the office and they told us that they had overstayed
At this point we got even more confused and flabbergasted so once again we asked the officers why we were in the office and that’s when they said,”the immigration doesn’t believe you have funds to sustain your stay.”
We tried explaining to them thatwe had themoney inour accounts
But this went into deaf ears and they then stamped our passports “denied entry.”
From that office we were moved to another one where we were given an expulsion order to sign. We refused as we felt we had not been treated fairly and their reason of refusing us entry was fault.
Next, we were taken to a detention center. This room was scary and terrible!The room had similar cages like the ones used to house animals at animal shelters. On the cages surfaces were smelly paper thin mattresses.We did not know what was happening as not much was communicated
So once we got to the room with cages, our fears escalated!
Never in my life had I been so horrified and scared! In tears, we asked them not to keep us in there.
Meanwhile they were speaking in Thai, a language we don’t understand while giving us water and blankets.
Police officers then came and in more hot tears we tried to explain the situation. They tried to help by asking us to submit the return flight and hotel confirmation again. They also confirmed that we had sufficient money for our short stay. @BKK_airport @BBCAfrica @bbcchinese
Later, they came back saying that the immigration couldn’t let us through and “no is no" also that the reason was not that we did not have enough money but rather our attitude when speaking with them!
I was so confused and failed to understand really. @BKK_airport @BBCAfrica
Anyway, after a while we were let out of the room with cages and were allowed to stay in the airport lounge under a condition that we have to pay for the guards that would be watching over us. You can imagine how scared and confused we were!
We were denied entry because of our attitude? Since when is asking for answers an attitude? Why would we have to pay for a sin that was not true? What really was going on?I had so many questions in my head.Or was it about the colour of our skin as none of the other travellers,
Or was it about the colour of our skin as none of the other travellers, who were either white or Asian, had been pulled aside while we were at the immigration clearance.
Two guards took shifts in watching us the entire 12 hours we were in the lounge. @BKK_airport @BBCAfrica
. In those hours, they said we should wait for a call from the airline we came with which was Spring Airlines. And whenever we asked why we were to wait for a call from the airline, the guards didn’t have any answers.
#thaiimmigration #thaiembassy @BBCThailand
It was after 12 hours then a man came and told us to book our flight back to Shanghai with the airline we came with. We were in utter shock! We were more confused as we were earlier promised that they’d deal with this. @BKK_airport @BBCAfrica @bbcswahili @BBCThailand #racism
We couldn't argue as it was very clear that whatever we triedto explain would fall on deaf ears.Besides were already too tired aswe hadn’t eaten for over 18 hours so we booked aflight and the next one was 10 hours from then!#hate #racism
#thaiimmigration #thaiembassy
Remember we had left at 13h45 the previous day and the flight had arrived at 20h00 such making it some 7 plus hours, between the immigration clearance to the caged room it was some 3 plus hours, we had been in the lounge for 12 hours and we had some 10 hours to wait for a flight
Anyway, right after the man came, we were taken to the detention room again. This is the traumatizing room with the cages! This time we stayed there for 10hours. Apart from the cages with paper thin mattresses, the room had dim lights, a smelly toilet and the cages were terrible
We were very scared as nothing was being communicated to us and we did not know what would follow.
Our flight back was scheduled at 0330hrs. Being in that room was most traumatizing so we called them and begged them to let us out.
They then told us that they would at 0000hrs
It was about 1900hrs at that time.
At 0230hrs came a guy who asked us to make payment for having guards at the lounge AND for staying at the most traumatizing detention room! This was the first ... paying for being traumatized! #hate #racism #corruption
And... didn’t these same people believe we hadn’t any money!? But yet they wanted us to pay them with money we did not have?
I then was taken to the airport ATM which didn’t work and the officer then asked some random Chinese to give us cash in RMB (so he could change it to TB)
and I would refund them via wechat. We succeeded and got the money to pay them. The irony of it all!
We then headed to the departures gate where we were asked for more money! They said it was for the escorts! This was too much already! Too much to bear! @ThaiPBSWorld @MFAThai
We once again broke down as they clearly knew that we did not have any cash with us and it was 15 minutes until our flight was to take off!They did not care if we would miss our flight, have to stay more hours,take us back to the room with cages and most probably pay again for
They did not care at all!
We however had no choice as we wanted to leave Thailand at the fastest so we sent them the money via wechat. And boarded our plane.
At this point we were not sure if it was about corruption, racism or both! @ThaiPBSWorld @ThaiAirways @BBCAfrica @BBCWorld
Not only had we been detained at the airport for over 48 hours between the 3 of us we had wasted some unrefundable US$895 for the airfare! We had been forced to pay the 2 guards some US$100 and another US$100 for the detention centre accommodation and some US$50 for the escorts!
Not included is US$ 655 for our actual expected return flight dates on October 10th, that had been saved in 3 hard months! Never in my life!
We only got our passports back at the immigration in Shanghai where we also had some processes to follow.
In the plane in fact, we were given the seats at the back and upon landing, we were asked to get off last and were taken through by another officer.
The humiliating trauma of it all!
#hate #racism #corruption
#xenophobia #discrimination
#Thailand #Bangkok
#black #race
And by the way, we had another friend that took a different flight to Thailand. She’s Djibouti-Ethiopian with a much lighter complexion than us and naturally long hair. She was going to visit too. She smoothly cleared at the immigration even though she hadn’t any cash with her.
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