A Ugandan woman is speaking out after she claims she was turned away from a hotel in Guangzhou, China, accusing several hotels in the city of “blacklisting” guests from Kenya, Uganda and Nigeria.
Juliet Hatanga, a senior magistrate from Uganda, told the BBC at first, the hotel didn’t give a reason for turning her away but said she simply couldn’t stay there.
“…They opened the door for me, I told them my name and they confirmed I had a room,” Hatanga recalled. “Then they asked for my passport; when I gave them my passport they told me ‘sorry, we cannot host you.'”
When she asked why Hatanaga said she was told the hotel had orders from police not to allow guests from Uganda.
“You’re no longer wanted,” she said hotel workers told her.
Hatanga was left looking for another place to stay. All the hotels within a 30-mile radius weren’t allowing Ugandans either, however. Apparently, someone had committed a crime at one of the local hotels and the suspect was believed to be either Ugandan, Kenyan or Nigerian, she explained. Thus, all those nationalities were barred from lodging at Guangzhou hotels.
One of the hotels reportedly put up a notice declaring “Black/African guests are not welcome,” according to the U.S. consulate.
“Just because one Black person was suspected to come from one of those countries, all of us were condemned,” Hatanga said. ” … So basically everyone was being thrown out.”
The magistrate said the entire ordeal left her feeling “horrible,” and condemned the racist policy.
“I think it’s unfair especially when [Uganda] has been so welcoming to the Chinese government,” she told the BBC. “Our president has been giving them tax exemptions — they’re very welcomed, they’re made comfortable. They’ve been given land!”
“This kind of racial profiling didn’t go well with me,” Hatanga added. “I felt that as a state of Uganda, we were insulted.”
The magistrate said she has no plans of visiting China ever again.