Page last updated at 12:58 GMT, Friday, 18 December 2009

Asylum mother and child released from custody

PreciousMhango and her mother Florence
Precious Mhango and her mother Florence were previously at Dungavel

A woman and her 10-year-old daughter fighting deportation are back in Glasgow after being released from custody.

Florence Mhango and daughter Precious, originally from Malawi, were released from Yarl's Wood detention centre in Bedfordshire, on Thursday.

They are temporarily living in emergency accommodation and awaiting the outcome of a judicial review.

The family's case was taken up by First Minister Alex Salmond last month.

The pair had previously been locked up in Dungavel detention centre in Lanarkshire.

It is a source of utter shame that the UK government sees fit to lock up innocent children and babies like criminals in what are effectively prisons for months on end
Robina Qureshi

Nationalist Glasgow MSP Anne McLaughlin, who has campaigned for the family's release, said: "I am overjoyed to hear from Florence that her and Precious have been released.

"I am still waiting to hear how and why they have been released and hope that their case will be dealt with more favourably now.

"This release is testament to the united campaign, led by their friends and neighbours in Cranhill, which put forward a positive and repeated message for Florence and Precious to be released."

Last month, the first minister told MSPs that pressure was mounting on UK immigration chiefs to allow the pair to stay in the UK after lobbying from the Scottish government.

'Enforce decisions'

Robina Qureshi, director of the Scottish charity Positive Action in Housing, said: "Precious Mhango committed no crime against this country.

"The fact that her mother's asylum claim has been outstanding for seven years is absolutely nothing to do with her.

"It is therefore a source of utter shame that the UK government sees fit to lock up innocent children and babies like criminals in what are effectively prisons for months on end."

Phil Taylor, director of the UK Border Agency in Scotland and Northern Ireland, said: "I can confirm that this failed asylum family has been released while their application for judicial review is considered by the courts.

"We would much rather that a family, whom our courts have found do not qualify for asylum or for humanitarian protection, leave the UK voluntarily.

"Where they refuse to do so, despite being given every opportunity, it is our responsibility to enforce the decisions of the courts and send them home.

"The decision to detain a family before removal only happens as a last resort, because the parents refuse to take the opportunity to go home under their own steam with assistance from the Home Office and the International Organisation for Migration."



Print Sponsor


SEE ALSO
Asylum family gets late reprieve
24 Nov 09 |  Glasgow, Lanarkshire and West
Plea over asylum family detention
19 Nov 09 |  Glasgow, Lanarkshire and West
Hundred children held at Dungavel
01 Nov 09 |  Glasgow, Lanarkshire and West
SNP urge end to child detentions
01 Aug 09 |  Glasgow, Lanarkshire and West
MSP's plea for asylum raid family
26 May 09 |  Glasgow, Lanarkshire and West

RELATED INTERNET LINKS
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

BBC iD

Sign in

BBC navigation

Copyright © 2019 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific