To ask the Minister for Justice and Equality the steps he has taken to address the issue of organisations making third-party payments to secure funding under the endowment option of the immigrant investor programme or other options; and if he will make a statement on the matter.
The payment of fees by a charity or enterprise is a commercial matter to be decided upon by the responsible parties of the organisation and the policing of this is not a matter for this Department. The Charities Regulator is the competent authority with responsibility for the charities sector.
My Department has, however, made it clear through information updates and engagement with the charity sector that any funding received through the endowment option of the Immigrant Investor Programme is to be solely utilised for the purposes for which it was sought and that there can be no deductions of fees from the amount being donated. This goes against the entire purpose of this option which is that of a donation to a good cause. My Department will take the necessary steps to ensure this is the case, up to and including removing the residence permission from an applicant found to have engaged in such practice.
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