Man alleges racist attacks on his Rathfarnham council flat

South Dublin County Council ordered to release all information regarding case

A local authority has been ordered by the High Court to deliver up all information in its possession concerning the case of a man who claims he has been wrongly refused a transfer from his council flat following alleged racist-related attacks on his home.

Happy Agamah (64), a German citizen who has lived in Ireland since 2008 and works as a taxi driver, claims he has been the victim of violence, intimidation and racist abuse at his flat in Ballyboden, Rathfarnham, Dublin.

The most serious incident was an attempted arson attack on June 9th last, he says.

South Dublin County Council says the June 9th incident was allegedly carried out by a local woman with psychiatric problems who is now to be transferred from her council flat.


It says a transfer for Mr Agamah is not warranted because the the Garda does not believe he is under threat.

The council says the incident happened when the woman set fire to a mattress in a communal garden at the back of the apartments which then set a shed alight and caused damage to the exterior of Mr Agamah’s flat. It was not established if Mr Agamah was deliberately targeted, the council says.

Mr Agamah was seeking an order directing the council provide him with alternative accommodation.

The President of the High Court, Mr Justice Nicholas Kearns, adjourned the case after expressing concern about when certain Garda information became known about to the woman alleged to have been involved in the June 9th incident and a previous incident.

The judge said the information in the possession of gardaí was not conveyed to the council until November, after it had refused Mr Agamah’s application for a transfer.

All the information in the possession of the council should be disclosed to Mr Agamah’s lawyers within 21 days.

In his action, Mr Agamah is also seeking damages and says a psychiatrist has concluded he has developed post traumatic stress disorder.

He claims the refusal to transfer him constitutes inhuman or degrading treatment and/or an interference with his right to respect for private and family life, under the Constitution and European Convention on Human Rights.

His lawyers say consultations with a Garda superintendent, whose advice led the council to decide there was no reasonable basis to warrant a transfer, are not relevant to transfers on medical, compassionate or exceptional grounds.   It is also claimed there had been no follow up into his complaints of racist abuse.

The council denies any interference with his rights.

The Garda Commissioner is a notice party in the case.

Mr Justice Kearns said all kinds of racist abuse and attacks are to be “utterly deprecated” but he was concerned certain information about the woman, whom he noted had been committed to a psychiatric institution on a number of occasions, had only become known in November.  Mr Agamah was refused a transfer in August, the court heard.