British Airways plane leaves without deportees

The family were not deported today as the home office had planned. Though they were taken to the airport at 6am this morning and actually boarded the plane bound for Nigeria. On board the plane Kemi said she overheard British Airways staff talking about ‘all the phone calls’ before informing the family that they were unable to fly them as they had been advised she was not fit to travel. Kemi was admitted to hospital Monday afternoon and though discharged late Monday night she is still suffering with serve back pain. None of the family has had their malaria immunization, which the Home Office has a duty to provide when travelling to Nigeria. The malaria immunization process requires a period of two and half weeks for a pregnant woman.

Tuesday morning we contacted the British Airways Pre-Medical Clearance Unit about the family’s case to alert them of our concerns about their health should they be deported. We passed the contact details on to our email list and asked people also raise their concerns. We believe it was this direct pressure from the local community on the airline to refuse to comply with the immoral wishes of the Home office that stopped this deportation.

Of course the family’s case is not over; they are currently imprisoned in Yarlswood detention centre (pictured), without legal representation and still with the threat of immanent deportation hanging over them. No Borders South Wales have been in regular contact over the phone and along with members of the local Nigerian community in Cardiff are in the process of getting proper legal representation for the family. As of yet Kemi and Taiwo haven’t been given any further details about what the Home Office is going to do with them. Detainees are required to be given their removal details at least 72 hours before there is an attempt to deport.

Thank-you to everyone who got in contact, especially with the airline, it can get results. If anyone would like to get more involved with deportation campaigns either with No Borders or just learn what they can be effective with over the phone/internet please get in contact, and if you can, come along to the No Borders Public meeting this Thursday.

There is now a page at the National Coalition of Anti-Deportation Campaigns about this case. check it out here.