May 20, 2024

UK threatens to deport physically-challenged Nigerian after 38 years

UK threatens to deport physically-challenged Nigerian after 38 years

The United Kingdom has threatened to deport a physically-challenged Nigerian man, Anthony Olubunmi George, over an alleged forged entry stamp in his passport.

George who has lived in the UK for 38 years, after he left Nigeria at the age of 24 in 1986, according to the Guardian UK.

The 61-year-old Nigerian has no criminal convictions and made several applications for leave to remain in the UK, which the Home Office has rejected, most recently on 7 May.

George’s case became the second African facing a huge disappointment with the UK Home Office after spending several years in Britain.

Vanguard reported last week that a 74-year-old Ghanaian Nelson Shardey, who has resided in the UK since 1977, was refused indefinite leave to remain despite being in the country for most of his adult life.

As the case of the Nigerian, he has never left the UK and has no criminal convictions, with the reports of having two strokes, which left him with problems with speech and mobility in 2019.

When George arrived, Margaret Thatcher was prime minister and Rishi Sunak is the ninth to hold office since George has lived in the UK. 

He has endured many periods of homelessness and disclosed he has lost count of the number of friends who have given him shelter over the years, adding that he no longer has any close family in Nigeria.

The Guardian UK said in 2005, his previous solicitors submitted a forged entry stamp in his passport and have subsequently been reported to the police and the legal regulatory bodies.

George told the Guardian he knew nothing about the passport stamp until many years later. His current lawyer, Naga Kandiah of MTC Solicitors, cited his poor previous legal representation as the reason for George’s problems. 

In his most recent refusal, Home Office officials said: “Unfortunately this is not something that is considered an exceptional circumstance.”

Kandiah has lodged an appeal against the latest refusal.

A previous Home Office rejection of his case states: “It’s open to your family and friends to visit you in Nigeria.”

George said, “I don’t know how many different sofas I’ve slept on – too many to count. I don’t have my life, living the way I’m living now. My health problems since I had my stroke are my biggest worry. All I’m asking for is some kindness from the Home Office.”