A Fijian man who served in the British Army for 13 years is fighting to stay in the UK after being told he must leave the country by 9 August.
L/Cpl Isimeli Baleiwai served in Bosnia, Northern Ireland, Iraq twice and once in Afghanistan, before leaving the Army in June. He is married to a UK national and has two children who were born here.
Regardless of this on 28 June 2012, L/Cpl Baleiwai heard that he had been refused citizenship and would also be refused Indefinite Leave to Remain because he had what the UK Border Agency (UKBA) classed as a criminal conviction so was not of “good character”. On 12 July he was informed by letter that he must leave the country by 9 August.
So what was the heinous crime that, after 13 years serving in British Army uniform, makes him unsuitable to live in this country?
Maybe murder, rape, terrorism, paedophilia, armed robbery?
No, in 2010 he was involved in a drunken brawl with another squaddie for which the Army fined him £1,000!
We know from recent cases that this government are quite willing to accept that even if someone living here has been convicted of murder, rape, terrorism, paedophilia, armed robbery the chances are that they will not be deported because it infringes their human rights.
The law may or may not be an ass but in this case the people responsible for interpreting it most certainly are.
So far 9 Fijian soldiers have been killed in Afghanistan serving in the British Army, L/Cpl Baleiwai spent 13 years putting his life on the line for the UK Government. His reward from the UK Government is deportation!
This means that either the family has to split, with his wife and children staying in their home country after he is deported, or the family stays together meaning that his wife and children have to move to a strange country that they know nothing about!
Why is he being kicked out but not some of those found guilty of murder, rape, terrorism, paedophilia, armed robbery?
He is an easy target, simple as that!
The full BBC report can be found here.
England Watch list of the Fallen in Afghanistan can be found here.