The Government of Trinidad and Tobago yesterday chartered a flight to deport 15 illegal Ghana nationals saying that it was difficult to get visas for the men to travel back to their country through commercial flights.
The Ghanaians were deported following a 12-hour marathon court case on Saturday by lawyers to prevent their deportation.
There were five applications for judicial review from Abdul Raheem Suleiman, Henry Mensah, Ernest Aglago, Abdullah Pechie, Olatunji Thomas Adams and Richard Osei Appiah.
Mensah and Aglago, who have been living illegally in Trinidad since 2005 attempted to seek refugee status, stating that they were fearful of returning to Ghana because of the Ebola virus, whilst Seibu Abdulai made an application for habeas corpus.
Earlier, they tried to challenge the deportation order of the Chief Immigration Officer but failed at the High Court.
Justice Ricky Rahim rejected their applications and also ruled that they pay the State’s legal costs.
Attorneys representing the 15 immigrants immediately appealed the judge’s ruling and proceeded to the Court of Appeal, where another judge also dismissed all the applications and ordered that the deportation order be executed.
Attorney Faris Scoon described the move to deport the African nationals as unjust and unhumanitarian. He said some of the men deported have been living here for more than 10 years and have Trinidadian wives and children here.
“I think that is harsh, oppressive, unjust, inhumane and unhumanitarian conduct. Quite frankly, I am ashamed to be a citizen of Trinidad and Tobago on account of what our immigration policies are,” said Scoon.