The Department of Justice has confirmed that all those seeking naturalisation in Ireland must be in a position to support themselves – and their families – without recourse to social welfare.
Record numbers of people have been applying for naturalisation in Ireland, with a total of 10,885 people seeking residency here last year.
During 2008, a total of 3,117 new Irish were granted citizenship but another 2,795 applications were declined, frequently on the basis that the person was not employed or amidst suspicions of fraud.
The sheer volume of claims – which includes close to 1,000 per month this year – has led to a massive backlog and a 23-month waiting period for decisions.
Around 4,500 Nigerians and 2,200 Filipinos have sought Irish citizenship in the past five years.