A Winnipeg MP has asked Canada’s immigration minister to show mercy and let an abused woman from Nigeria who came to work as a nurse in a Manitoba mental hospital stay in Canada.
"I believe Oleyumisi Adetutu Akinbinu qualifies to be afforded safe refuge and sanctuary in this country so she can receive the medical attention she needs to recover from the multiple traumas she’s suffered," wrote Winnipeg Centre MP Pat Martin.
Akinbinu is a constituent in Martin’s riding. She came to Canada in 2003 when she was recruited to work at the Selkirk Mental Health Centre. The woman, who left an abusive marriage in Nigeria, couldn’t handle the stress, separation from her kids and old trauma, a psychological report presented at her Immigration and Refugee Board hearing last fall said.
She didn’t pass her Canadian nursing exam and took jobs as a health-care aide and house cleaner until her work visa ran out. Afraid to return to Nigeria, she applied for refugee protection in 2013. Her application was rejected by an Immigration and Refugee Board member who said returning to Nigeria didn’t put her in danger. Akinbinu, 48, appealed on the grounds the decision was unreasonable and the board member hearing the case ignored evidence.
A Federal Court judge ruled against her in June and a removal order has been issued for Akinbinu, who will be put on a plane to Nigeria Nov. 2 unless Immigration Minister Chris Alexander stays her deportation order.
The woman, who is a Christian and has been helped by the congregation at King’s Fellowship church, fears returning to her hometown, which has been attacked by the extremist group Boko Haram. She says she’s also afraid of her abusive husband and his extended family in Nigeria’s Lagos state
MIKE DEAL / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS