'My Mom and Dad are the people of Sligo' – Loveth's appeal to stop deportation

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'My Mom and Dad are the people of Sligo' – Loveth's appeal to stop deportation
'My Mom and Dad are the people of Sligo' – Loveth's appeal to stop deportation

Friends of a Nigerian woman who is facing deportation have appealed to Justice Minister Charlie Flanagan to allow her to remain in Ireland.

Almost 3,000 people have signed online petitions in support of Loveth Oyiboka (29), who has lived in Globe House direct provision centre in Co Sligo for four years.

The Movement of Asylum Seekers in Ireland (MASI), which has co-ordinated the petition, said Loveth was the only survivor in her family following an attack by Boko Haram on her village in Borno State in 2015.

“She would be in danger if she was sent back,” said MASI spokesman Lucky Khambule.

He said the case of Co Galway-based Brazilian man Lucivaldo Araujo da Silva (35), who was facing deportation this week until the minister intervened, showed Mr Flanagan had the power “to change lives”.

Loveth said she was frightened at the prospect of being deported to Nigeria and said: “My Mom and Dad are the people of Sligo.”

Artist Anna Spearman, who founded Sligo Global Kitchen, a project designed to help asylum seekers integrate with the wider community, said she has known Loveth since she arrived.

“She came here with no friends and family but she has a lot of people looking out for her in Sligo,” said Ms Spearman.

“It is scary to think of a young Catholic woman being sent back to Nigeria. I think she is terrified.”

Actor Donal O’Kelly, another of Loveth’s supporters, said it was “unthinkable” that she would be deported after all she had been through.

“It is very worrying that it has got to this stage,” he added.

A spokesman for the Department of Justice said that, for reasons of confidentiality, he could not comment on individual cases immigration of asylum cases.

He said applications for international protection were examined in detail and all available appeals processes exhausted before a deportation order was made.

All decisions could be subject to review by the High Court and it was open to any person to make an application under the Immigration Act to have a deportation order revoked based on new information or changed circumstances, he added.

Irish Independent

Source: Irish