A. & Anor -v- Refugee Applications Commissioner & Ors, [2008] IEHC 314 (2008)

Docket Number:2006 1237 JR
Party Name:A. & Anor, Refugee Applications Commissioner & Ors
Judge:Hedigan J.

THE HIGH COURT2006 1237 JRBETWEENK. A. AND A. A. (A MINOR, SUING BY HIS MOTHER AND NEXT FRIEND, K. A.)APPLICANTSANDTHE REFUGEE APPLICATIONS COMMISSIONER,THE REFUGEE APPEALS TRIBUNAL,THE MINISTER FOR JUSTICE, EQUALITY AND LAW REFORM,THE ATTORNEY GENERAL AND IRELANDRESPONDENTSANDHUMAN RIGHTS COMMISSIONNOTICE PARTYJUDGMENT OF MR. JUSTICE HEDIGAN, delivered on the 16th day of October, 2008. 1. The first named applicant is a national of Nigeria and a member of the Yoruba tribe. The second named applicant is her son, who was born in Ireland. They are seeking leave to apply for judicial review of the decision of the Office of the Refugee Applications Commissioner ("ORAC") to recommend that they should not be declared refugees, and of the subsequent decision of the Refugee Appeals Tribunal ("RAT") to refuse their appeal from the impugned ORAC decision.Factual Background2. The first named applicant had two children with her first partner, who she met in 1993 and separated from in 1999. In 2001, she had twins with another man, who she married in 2003. She says that in 2005, his family objected to their marriage and when she fell pregnant again, they told her that she would have to undergo female genital mutilation (FGM) and that the child, once born, would be subjected to tribal rituals. The applicant says that her husband supported the wishes of his family. She did not report these matters to the police as she thought they would tell her to settle such matters herself. Instead, she fled Nigeria with her unborn child.Procedural Background3. The first named applicant arrived in the State on 11th October, 2005, having travelled via France. She indicated that her unborn child should be included under her asylum application. She gave birth to a son - the second named applicant - on 4th November, 2005. In her ORAC questionnaire and interview, she claimed to fear that she would be subjected to FGM and that her son would be subjected to tribal rituals. She was very non-specific as to what such rituals might involve, suggesting only that he might be immersed under water in a river for confirmation of his parentage.4. A section 13 report was compiled and in a decision dated 6th March, 2006, the ORAC officer recommended that the applicants should not be declared refugees. Negative credibility findings were drawn and it was found that state protection and internal relocation might reasonably have been available to the applicants. The applicants' appeal to the RAT was rejected...

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