Rwanda says it is ready to receive migrants from Britain after the UK Government this week approved a long-stalled and controversial Bill seeking to stem the tide of people crossing the English Channel in small boats by deporting some of them to the East African country.

There is a place ready and waiting for some of the migrants – a refurbished Hope Hostel in the vibrant upscale neighbourhood of Kagugu, an area of the Rwandan capital of Kigali that is home to many expats and several international schools.

The hostel once housed college students whose parents died in the 1994 genocide, a horrific period in the country’s history when an estimated 800,000 Tutsi were killed by extremist Hutu in massacres that lasted more than 100 days.

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The interior of the Hope Hostel (AP)

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has said the flights would begin in July but has refused to provide details or say how many people would go.

Rwanda government’s deputy spokesman Alain Mukuralinda told The Associated Press on Tuesday that authorities here have been planning for the migrants’ arrival for two years.

“Even if they arrive now or tomorrow, all arrangements are in place,” he said.

“The Rwanda critics and the UK judges who earlier said Rwanda is not a safe country have been proven wrong,” Mr Mukuralinda said. “Rwanda is safe.”

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One of the 50 twin bedrooms (Atulinda Allan/AP)

Management at the four-storey Hope Hostel say the facility is ready and can accommodate 100 people at full capacity. The government says it will serve as a transit centre and that more accommodation would be made available as needed.

After they arrive from Britain, the migrants will be shown to their rooms to rest, after which they will be offered food and given some orientation points about Kigali and Rwanda, said hostel manager Ismael Bakina.

Tents will be set up within the hostel’s compound for processing their documentation and for various briefings. The site is equipped with security cameras, visible across the compound.

Within the compound are entertainment places, a mini football pitch, a basketball and a volleyball court and a red-carpeted prayer room. For those who want to light up, “there is even a smoking room”, Mr Bakina explained.

Meals will be prepared in the hostel’s main kitchen but provisions are also being made for those who want to prepare their own meals, he said. The migrants will be free to walk outside the hostel and visit Kigali city centre.

Migration Britain Rwanda
The view from Hope Hostel (Atulinda Allan/AP)

“We will have different translators, according to (their) languages,” Mr Bakina added, saying they include English and Arabic.

The government has said the migrants will have their papers processed within the first three months. Those who want to remain in Rwanda will be allowed to do so while authorities will also assist those who wish to return to their home countries.

While in Rwanda, migrants who obtain legal status, presumably for Britain, will also be processed, authorities have said, though it is unclear what that means exactly.

For those who choose to stay, Mr Mukuralinda said Rwanda’s government will bear full financial and other responsibilities for five years, after which they will be considered integrated into society.

At that point, they can start managing on their own.