Green MEP Jean Lambert has today spoken out against the Government's plans to deport a disabled activist to Kenya.
Mr Peter Gichura, who has been in a wheelchair since 1990, has been active in campaigning for disability rights throughout society including on London's buses and about the appalling conditions in Harmondsworth detention centre. He has been threatened with deportation even though his life would be in danger if he returned to Kenya due to a lack of access to vital medical attention.
Today Jean Lambert called on the Government to grant him leave to remain on humanitarian grounds; "The Government have an obligation to grant Mr Peter Gichura humanitarian protection but deporting him to Kenya may see his life cut short. Not only would Peter's life be threatened by the authorities there but, on the basis of conditions in Kenya, disability advocates have also warned that Peter's life would be in danger.
"If the Government really are going to deport someone with disabilities they must ensure that someone so vulnerable is granted the protection and assistance they need in their destination country.
"Sadly this case seems to indicate that if asylum seekers stay quiet and 'below the radar' the Government let them stay. As soon as they try and positively contribute to society though asylum seekers increase their chances of deportation.
"It is now vital that the Government cancel Mr Gichura's deportation
and release him from detention immediately. Peter should be granted the right
to stay so that he can continue to receive medical support his life depends
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Notes to editors:
Jean Lambert: In October 2005 Jean was named MEP 2005 for Justice and Human Rights. Jean was first elected Green Party Member of the European Parliament for London in the 1999 European elections. She was re-elected in 2004. She is one of nine MEPs representing London and one of two UK Green representatives in the European Parliament.
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