One of the things I find daunting is the treatment of the detainees at Colnebrook.
I was arrested on Tuesday. I was put in a bus to travel a long way to Lincolnshire, to Morton Hall detention centre. No Home Office official inducted me there, they just asked my name and told me I’ve been arrested because I’m an overstayer. I stayed one night there. They did not tell me anything when they brought me back down to London.
The right thing to do would be to address me as a human. But no one spoke to me. They didn’t tell me that they were moving me to London, to Colnebrook. It happened when I was about to go to the bathroom, I hadn’t gone to for breakfast yet. They took me, and carried me to Colnebrook. They’ve put me in a unit for quick removal. Some people have been here a week.
I’ve lived here for 8 years. I have been a lecturer in this country. I’ve trained hundreds of engineers in this country. I’ve done loads of community work.
I have been living in Newcastle for the last 8 years. I’ve worked with a local charity and the Salvation Army. They do a lot of community work. Through the charity I’ve been working with students on ICT at Sunderland University. The MPs know about me, they’ve been writing letters. I’ve also lectured at Newcastle College on Engineering.
The Newcastle college employed me but then the Home Office advised them not to sponsor my application. The situation I am in was created by the Home Office. I wasn’t an unemployed person – I was giving lectures. A judge advised me to seek legal advice for a case against the Home Office. But in England we don’t have legal aid so I couldn’t challenge it. So my job ended because of the Home Office and the story started from there. Now I’m in detention. I cannot get justice. I do not have money to get my job back.
I want people to know: The strict immigration system has strangled me in this country. It prevented me from having the funds to prevent this becoming an issue. It’s important for people to know that the Home Office caused this problem in the first place.
My DBS record is clean – I challenge anybody to challenge it. I don’t have any record of doing any wrong doing in this country. I didn’t choose to be here. Because I’m just an individual, I cannot get justice.
It is good to document what is happening here. There are more people here. I can see that there are people here who are going through excruciating pain. They are denying people access to their husbands and family. It’s like we don’t matter.
People would be better off if they had better access to legal aid in immigration. Immigration is one of the major issues in British society today. There are men here with children outside. Detention is taking their fathers away. Do you think those children would be happy tomorrow? It is creating a societal problem.When people have issues, it’s better to deal with them than throw the whole family into hardship. How should children carry on without fathers and without mothers, in a complex society like ours.
So more legal aid, help get justice for families and for the poor. It’s so important when people have no right work.
My lawyer made a mistake in my case. It’s basic element of humanity – we are not infallible as humans. But when there is a basic error and they admit it they should say okay we’ll seek a way to correct it. But they made people pay a heavy penalties for these errors by taking them out of the country, taking them out of their job. We are all humans yeah. And one of the elements of humanity is we make mistakes. And the law firm made a mistake but when we appealed they said it was out of date. And between these two stages it cost about £5000. And if we continued further I might have won but it would have cost so much more money. How can I pay that? And you’re not working because you can’t work. This is what I mean by being denied justice. Why is it like this?
You claim to be the crème de la crème of the in societies in the world. But where is the justice and the fairness here?