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When will the UK stop risking gay asylum seekers’ lives?

When will the UK stop risking gay asylum seekers’ lives?

The recent attempt by the UK Border Agency to deport Olalekan M Ayelokun yesterday (2 October) from Britain shows the government’s real stand on LGBT asylum seekers.

Fortunately Olalekan’s deportation was delayed at the last minute and now supporters are trying again to stop it.

Olalekan fled eight years ago from Nigeria to escape persecution because of his sexuality.

In attempting to send him back to Nigeria, one of the world’s most dangerous places to be gay, the British Home Office has used its traditional argument that his claims to be gay are not genuine.

It’s now the standard argument Home Office officials use to refuse asylum.

At what point is the HO going to admit that it is making a mistake and that the majority of asylum seekers who claim refuge due to their sexuality are genuine? How can the British government justify risking so many lives to weed out the few rogue cases that claim falsely asylum due to sexual orientation.

The stance being taken is one that is prepared to sacrifice the majority of asylum seekers to avoid the system being taken advantage of by a small minority of rogue claimants.

As in any system of government or policy, asylum is open to abuse and manipulation by rogue elements and those prepared to try their luck to obtain a better life. But in its efforts to wipe out this corruption, the UK Border Agency and Home Office are playing with the lives of genuine LGBT asylum seekers who are fleeing from persecution.

When Olalekan’s case came to court, the judge refused to accept that he was gay. This decision was based on his opinion despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary.

A civil servant, Jason Feather working for HM Customs and Excise, gave evidence that he was in fact gay, that he had been living in his house and that he has had sex with the applicant. This was ignored.

The UK government is now even refusing to accept the word of its own employees and pillars of society who they rely on to govern our country. It makes you wonder what evidence they would be prepared to accept that a person is homosexual.

Is our government advocating the asylum seeker give up his fundamental human rights and subject themselves to medical examinations. That we copy Lebanon’s recent example and subject them to ‘anal probes’ (discredited though they are)?

How can you prove in court that a person is gay? Does the UK want to take a route of Sharia law and have four independent witnesses present to confirm that sexual activity took place?

It is time the UK government makes a clear and decisive statement as to what evidence it requires to prove that the asylum seeker is genuinely LGBT.

At what point do we say we will not allow it to happen anymore?

It is past time that Prime Minister David Cameron stood by his words and his government’s pledge and stopped deporting lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender asylum seekers.

Cameron stated in 2010 ‘those Africans seeking asylum on the basis of sexual orientation and at real risk of persecution in their home countries should be allowed to stay in the UK’.

When is our prime minister going to show he meant what he said and prove that his government is prepared to give LGBT asylum seekers the haven they deserve?