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Court upholds Home Office decision to deport man with bipolar to Uganda

SAM TOBIN reports from the High Court

THE COURT of Appeal upheld yesterday the Home Office’s decision to deport a bipolar man to Uganda despite him having lived “almost all his life” in Britain.

Kennedy Mwesezi, 30, came to Britain aged two with his mother and brother and speaks only English, having returned to Uganda just “a couple of times on family holidays.”

After he was sentenced to six years for possession of a converted starter pistol in 2012, the Home Office decided to deport Mr Mwesezi in September 2014.

Then home secretary Theresa May found that “although he had spent almost all his life in the United Kingdom … he had been brought up in a Ugandan household and hence had absorbed some understanding of Ugandan culture.”

She also said that he could receive “appropriate medical treatment” for his bipolar affective disorder, which had only been diagnosed while he was on remand for the firearm offence.

The first-tier tribunal (FTT) found that Mr Mwesezi “would be capable of restarting his life” in Uganda, but ruled his deportation would be disproportionate and unlawful.

However, the upper tribunal overturned that decision, finding that the FTT had given too much weight to evidence before it that “medication for bipolar affective disorder is not available in Uganda.”

The Court of Appeal dismissed Mr Mwesezi’s appeal, finding he was “intelligent, educated, resourceful and in reasonable good health [and] could cope with his bipolar disorder.”

Lord Justice Sales ruled that, despite his father, brother and half-sister being in Britain, Mr Mwesezi had “no compelling family ties” to prevent him from being removed from the country.

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