O. & Ors -v- MJELR, [2008] IEHC 80 (2008)

Docket Number:2006 146 JR
Party Name:O. & Ors, MJELR
Judge:Clark J.



G.O., Ol.O., P.O. (a minor suing by his mother and next friend Om.o.), R.A. (a minor suing by her mother and next friend S.O.), S.O., Om.O. and J.O. (a minor suing by his mother and next friend Om.O.) ApplicantsAnd

The Minister for Justice Equality and Law Reform Respondent

JUDGMENT of Ms. Justice Clark delivered on the 19th day of February, 2008

  1. This is an application by seven members of the O. family who are of Nigerian origin for leave to judicially review a decision of the Minister refusing to revoke deportation orders directed to the first applicant, G.O. who is the mother and grandmother of the other applicants and Ol.O. the second applicant who is her son and the brother or uncle to the other applicants.

  2. P.O. and his cousin R.A. are Irish born infants. J.O. the brother of P. is a Nigerian born minor and the remaining applicants are daughters of G.O..

  3. G.O. arrived in the country with her daughters and their partners and one small child in July 2002. All in the party applied for asylum. Shortly afterwards both daughters gave birth to Irish born children and they and their partners have residency rights in the State as parents of Irish born citizen children. Ol.O. arrived in early 2003 as an unaccompanied minor seeking asylum. He was under the care of the Health Board until reunited with his mother G. at the end of 2003.

  4. The first applicant G.O. is now 40 years old and a native of Nigeria. She and her son Ol. have been through the refugee process and have failed to establish that they are entitled to asylum within the State either at first instance or on appeal. The applicants alleged that they were persecuted because they had converted from Islam to Christianity. Credibility seems to have been a major problem as the narrative of the reasons for seeking asylum were found non credible and one document relied on was deemed a forgery.

  5. On the 4th June, 2004 they were notified in writing of the Minister's proposal to make deportation orders and were invited to make submissions for temporary leave to remain. Submissions outlining reasons why they should be permitted to remain were sent to the Minister's office on the 28th June, 2004, 12th August, 2004 and 3rd September, 2004. Many documents, testimonials and certificates were produced to show that G.O. was an experienced business woman capable of contributing to the Irish economy and of maintaining herself by running a proposed travel agency and internet café. Her son who was described as an athlete and a good student was sitting his leaving certificate exams that summer and had ambitions to become a pilot.

  6. The decision on leave to remain was deferred to allow G.O. and her son Ol. to apply for residency based on the Irish citizenship rights of the two Irish born family members. These applications pursuant to the IBC/05 scheme were made on 18th January, 2005 and were based on being grandparent and uncle of Irish citizen children. The applications were refused on the 5th and 6th October, 2005 and on the 2nd March, 2006 the applicants were notified that the Minister had made Deportation Orders dated the 3rd February, 2006.

  7. The applicants did not challenge the legality of the Deportation Orders themselves but instead brought an application to revoke the Deportation Orders on the basis under s. 3(11) of the Immigration Act, 1999 that the first applicant and her son Ol. were part of a traditional Nigerian family and as such were very involved in the rearing of the three infant grandchildren. In particular, the first applicant outlined that as a grandmother she was the primary care giver to her grandchildren as one of her daughters was in full time employment and the other was attending a course in further education. No mention was made of the roles of the fathers in the care of those children or at all.

  8. The Minister refused to revoke the Orders and the applicants now seek an Order of certiorari quashing those decisions on the grounds that in coming to his conclusion the Minister failed to have any or any proper regard for the applicants' rights under article 8(1) of the European Convention of Human Rights which...

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