Ugandan lesbian faces deportation
A Labour MP is supporting a Ugandan lesbian’s plight after she is facing deportation despite fleeing her Muslim father after he threatened to kill her, according to reports.
Faridah Kenyini, 20, came to Britain in 2004 and has been in a relationship with Sarah Garenette, a British security officer, however, a judge at her asylum hearing recently questioned her sexuality and ordered that she return home.
An attempt to remove her last week failed because of an administrative error, but Jim Cousins, Labour MP for Newcastle Central has now contacted immigration minister Liam Byrne detailing an offer to stop her deportation.
Her partner Ms Garenette has voluntarily offered to go with to Uganda following a civil partnership and then return together.
Mr Cousins told The Guardian: “I am fully committed to this solution and have a great deal of respect for Faridah’s partner for taking a decision that clearly contains a distinct element of risk.” If the offer was taken up, he said, it would resolve the situation in a “humane way that would also save the taxpayer money”.
Ms Kenyini said she fears going back, “I am afraid that my removal documents will have details about my sexuality and that I will be handed over to the police and abused.”
A Home Office spokesperson said it did not comment on individual cases but insisted that it was committed to protecting genuine refugees, “If their application is refused, they have a right of appeal. If the appeal is unsuccessful, that means that it has been judged safe for that particular individual to return to their country of origin,” it said.
Homosexuality in Uganda is punishable with life imprisonment.
In August a Ugandan tabloid outed alleged homosexuals in the country prompting criticism from gay rights campaigners.