Asylum seekers battle it out in game show

A new game show in the Netherlands reportedly pits failed asylum seekers against each other as they compete for cash to take with them after deportation.

Weg van Nederland sees asylum claimants who have been refused entry to the Netherlands answer questions about Dutch culture in a bid to win prize money equivalent to £3,500.

The cash, designed to soften the blow of being deported, is won by the contestant who proves he or she has learned the most about Dutch ways of life during their time in the country.

Glamorous assistants dressed in air hostess costumes pose questions as they test the asylum seekers on their knowledge of the Dutch language and of the country’s history and geography.

So far, contestants on the VPRO channel’s show have included an aeronautical engineer who was later sent back to Cameroon and a Slavic student who faced deportation to Chechnya.

‘My first reaction was that this was a terrible idea,’ VPRO boss Frank Wiering said of the show, whose consolation prizes include tulip bulbs and a bullet-proof vest.

‘But then I realised the show was not really mocking asylum seekers, but highlighting their plight through humour.

‘The candidates are not actors, they are genuine unsuccessful asylum seekers who have to leave this country within a month or two.

‘The programme is sick but, let’s face it, the reality is sick too.’

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