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Gay man fighting deportation calls on Javid to end 'limbo'

PICTURED: Ken Macharia (centre) with supporters (left to right) Gareth Williams, Joseph Butler, Murray Jones and Przemek Szczodry from the Bristol Bisons rugby team

A GAY rugby player who is facing deportation to Kenya has called on the home secretary to end his “limbo” and make a decision on his case.

Ken Macharia, who came to the UK from Kenya 10 years ago to study for a masters, is currently on bail from an immigration removal centre after his application for asylum was rejected by the Home Office in 2016.

The mechanical engineer, 39, had applied for asylum on the basis of his sexuality but was told the Home Office deemed Kenya to be safe for gay people, according to a statement from his teammate.

In Kenya, homosexuality is illegal and can lead to a jail sentence of up to 14 years.

While his case is being processed, Macharia has been prohibited from working in the UK, meaning he has to survive with help from his mum, a 70-year-old nurse who works extra shifts to earn enough to help him.

"Before I started this process I was thinking the UK is a champion of human rights.

"But I was surprised by the treatment I received. It was extremely hostile. They do everything they can to make it really difficult to apply for asylum,” the BBC reported Macharia said.

“Sajid Javid needs to sort things out and really show the UK does live up to what it claims to be as a country that protects human rights,” Metro reported Macharia said.

More than 100,000 people have signed a petition calling on Macharia’s deportation to be stopped.

Macharia has received a lot of support from the Bristol Bisons, the inclusive and gay friendly rugby team that he plays for.

Team members have accompanied him to check-ins at the police station, a requirement under his bail conditions, and continued to support his fight to remain in the UK.

The BBC reported the Home Office said: "This government has a proud record of providing protection for asylum seekers fleeing persecution because of their sexual orientation or gender identity.

"All available evidence is carefully and sensitively considered... all decisions on claims based on sexual orientation are reviewed by a second experienced caseworker."

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