Housing campaigner Kwajo Tweneboa deems death of Awaab Ishak 'corporate manslaughter'

15 November 2022, 17:32

Kwajo Tweneboa shares horror stories of poor living conditions

By Grace Parsons

"It's an absolute disgrace": Kwajo Tweneboa highlights the lack of care from social housing providers after 2-year-old Awaab Ishak died from being exposed to mould.

Following the death of 2-year-old Awaab Ishak, Tom Swarbrick spoke to housing campaigner, Kwajo Tweneboa about the severity of poor living conditions in social housing.

Mr Tweneboa told Tom: "I've peeled back kids' mattresses and hundreds of cockroaches have crawled out...I've been stood in an inch and a half deep of raw sewage."

"It's an absolute disgrace...Awaab's case is shocking in the fact that a 2-year-old has lost his life. But you can tell [what] the attitude from these housing providers [is], by Rochdale Boroughwide Housing's response because they turned around and said it's a learning exercise.", the housing campaigner fumed.

Mr Tweneboa slammed the housing system: "A mum and dad have lost their son, it is corporate manslaughter...they've been left to live in those conditions after complaining, before he was even born, about the damp and mould in that property."

Awaab Ishak died of a severe respiratory condition that was caused by prolonged exposure to mould in his home in Rochdale, just a few days after his second birthday in December 2020, Rochdale Coroners Court found on Tuesday.

His parents Faisal Abdullah and Aisha Amin, who came from Sudan as asylum seekers, said after the ruling: "We have no doubt at all that we were treated this way because we were not from the country, and less aware of how the systems in the UK work."

READ MORE: 'This wouldn’t have happened if we were British': Parents of boy, 2, killed by mould slam 'racist' landlord

Kwajo Tweneboa details the severity of mouldy living conditions

The negligence doesn't stop at there: "In the last 18 months, I've had over 300 families reach out to me who are living in damp and mould, after complaining to their landlords and being ignored," recounts the housing campaigner.

"It's making a lot of people really ill, the amount of times I've spoken to parents of young children, who are living in homes filled with damp and mould, and have developed eczema and asthma but are still having to live in those conditions."

Mr Tweneboa told Tom that even five years on from Grenfell, "no lessons have been learnt" and this will eventually "cost the lives of more innocent social housing tenants".

READ MORE: Studio swindle? Landlord under fire for £850-a-month property branded a 'hallway' by house hunters.

Housing campaigner Kwajo Tweneboa reflects on the death of 2-year-old

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