Socialist Worker

Family living in fear of deportation

by Gary Leese
Issue No. 2163

The case of the Iloba family shows the government’s ruthless attitude towards asylum seekers.

Betty IIoba and her children Toby, aged 18, Saskia, aged 17 and

14-year-old Emanuel arrived in Britain four years ago after Betty’s husband was murdered in Nigeria.

The family settled in Rochdale, and become an important part of the local community. But the government decided they did not have a good enough reason to stay in the country.

Immigration officers took the family from their home on 10 July to the Yarl’s Wood detention centre in Bedfordshire. After they refused to board a flight to Nigeria, the Home Office agreed to review their case.

But immigration minister Phil Woolas said that the review found the circumstances of the case were “not sufficiently compelling or compassionate as to warrant the exercise of my discretion in their favour”.

Betty Illoba said, “The people who murdered my husband had threatened us before. I thought we could get safety here.

“I am so worried for my children. They are going to give me serious problems when I go back to Nigeria.”

The family were still attempting to stop their deportation as Socialist Worker went to press.


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