Mum-of-three battles deportation to Africa
Published 15/12/2007 | 09:38
A Nigerian widow who is facing deportation after fleeing to Northern Ireland has refused to allow herself to be taken away from her cell at a detention centre in England.
Aderonke Falode (40) has been detained along with her three children at the immigration removal centre for almost two months.
Mrs Falode fled Nigeria a year ago after her husband died and she was told she must wed an already married Nigerian man or face having her three young sons taken from her. Before arriving in Northern Ireland, Mrs Falode went to London where she claimed she was kept as a "house slave" by another Nigerian.
However, she managed to escape to Belfast, where she and her children have since become respected members of the community.
The Rev Johnston Lambe of Mountpottinger Presbyterian Church has helped to lead a campaign aimed at putting pressure on the Home Office to allow Mrs Falode to remain here.
Rev Lambe said Mrs Falode has been "very agitated and anxious" as she awaits her removal by the authorities.
" They keep saying that she and her sons do not have any community back in Northern Ireland, but they do, there are people here who care and are making enough noise about the fact that they care," he said.