Monday, February 20, 2006

Justice, what justice?

Here's something to be concerned about.
Since 6am last Tuesday a Salford family have been held in detention at Yarls Wood Removal centre resisting deportation to Rwanda. Olive Mukaraguwiza and her children Yvan Gisinko (aged 5), Oliver Hirwa (aged 17) and Sandra Gihozo (aged 18) after having lived in the UK for 3 years were arrested at dawn.

Significant issues
(1) Olive is an asylum seeker. She fled Rwanda after years of severe domestic violence towards her and her children. Wherever she lived in Rwanda her husband pursued and attacked her.

(2) The eldest daughter ,Sandra, has been studying her A levels for almost 2 years at Pendleton College. She has been offered a place at 3 universities. Just at the point of taking exams she has been arrested.

(3) The youngest child, Yvan, has lived most his life in the UK. He attends Lower Kersal School in Salford. His teachers and classmates are extremely concerned about him being held in a prison situation.

(4) The family were not informed of the refusal of their asylum claim by the Home Office. The raid on their house came as a complete surprise.

(5) The Home Office attempted to put the family on a plane to Rwanda last Friday. This was an Ethiopian Airways Flight. However because they were in such a distressed condition the pilot refused to fly them. Friends of the family are concerned that Olive may harm herself.
Things to do.
  1. Email Hazel Blears at
  2. Phone Hazel Blears at 0161 925 0705
  3. Stress
    • Hazel Blears as a Home Office minister has the ability to quickly and easily intervene with the Home Secretary to stop this deportation.
    • Sandra the daughter is about to take her A levels and the family should be allowed to return to Salford so Sandra can get on with her A levels, Oliver his ICT course and the whole family can benefit from this Government’s commitment to education, education, education.
    • Olive is now in a depressed and suicidal state.
Arbitrary deportation of those who have committed no crime other than to overstay is wrong. If you are in the UK and contributing to society, or getting in a position to contribute to society, you should be allowed to stay. That's a fair immigration policy. That's a just immigration policy. Arbitrary deportation is just plain cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment.

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