Sri Lankan family in Canada face deportation

5 February 2020 03:39 pm - 17     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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A Calgary family is facing deportation back to Sri Lanka even though two of their children were born in Canada, CTV News reported on Tuesday.

The family’s eldest son, nine-year-old Maneth Fernando, penned a letter to Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada Marco Mendicino, in a last ditch effort to have the Canadian Government’s intervention.

"Canada is a safe place with lots of good schools and my friends are here. If I go back, the kids in the Sri Lankan schools will laugh at me because I can only speak English," Maneth has told CTV News.

The letter indicates the boy is worried "something bad will happen" to his parents and younger siblings if they're sent back to Sri Lanka — the country where he and his parents were born.

The couple, Nishan Fernando and wife Sulakshana Hewage, have two Canadian-born children aged four years and 15 months.

The Canada Border Service Agency has arranged to have the family fly to Colombo, Sri Lanka March 3 following years of court proceedings.

"There are two Canadian born kids here and the only options that my clients were given is to put the Canadian-born into foster care and go back to Sri Lanka, which is completely unacceptable," said Udani Perera, the family’s lawyer.

The couple and their first born son came to Canada in 2012 after fleeing Sri Lanka. Fernando told Canadian immigration officials that his uncle had criminal ties and he feared for his family's safety.

"We were seeking a safe place for my kids and family," Fernando has told CTV News.

According to documents filed in Federal Court, the uncle was a "political fixer", "contract killer" and a "loan shark" who had ties to influential politicians.

The uncle, who raised Fernando, has since been murdered.

Fernando retained status as a worker in Canada until 2016. An application for permanent residency under humanitarian and compassionate grounds was refused in May 2016. The government said there wasn’t enough evidence of a safety risk in Sri Lanka.

The claim was further rejected in 2018.

That decision was appealed at the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada's refugee appeals division and litigated at the Federal Court and the decision was maintained, according to a statement from an Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) spokesperson.

The Federal Court said there wasn’t enough evidence of a risk to Fernando’s family even though they claimed two previous attacks on them.

The family has submitted a second application under humanitarian and compassionate grounds five months ago which is currently still in queue and does not prevent a removal order from being enforced.

"If applicants have to leave the country, their application for permanent residence will continue to be processed," indicated the IRCC statement.

Still, there are concerns for the family’s safety if Fernando is sent back to Sri Lanka, CTV said. "There are serious threats to their lives," said Perera.

Maneth's letter

  Comments - 17

  • mnsmart Wednesday, 05 February 2020 03:51 PM

    so even the Sinhalese feel SL is unsafe

    Samson Wednesday, 05 February 2020 04:01 PM

    Not human to send back the parents of two Canadian children.

    Yankee Dude Wednesday, 05 February 2020 04:23 PM

    Please give this family the chance to live in Canada specially when their two kids are Canadian born . God Bless them ! .

    Citizen Thursday, 06 February 2020 01:01 PM

    Having the two younger two kids seems to be a ploy to entitle them for PR. When Sinhalese run down the country what about the foreigners?

    Nimal Senanayake Wednesday, 05 February 2020 04:47 PM

    His uncle is a contract killer. He was killed. If one asks the question. Why is this chap worried about his safety? Was he involved or partner in killing in Sri Lanka. He is a threat to Canadian citzens. Send him back to Sri Lanka.

    Aj Wednesday, 05 February 2020 04:56 PM

    Oh simple problem Sinhala surname name issue is the issue...

    Gimmick Wednesday, 05 February 2020 05:14 PM

    The man may have criminal back ground and fearing arrest,please investigate. Please note that Sri Lanka is not a bad place

    Jayanath Wednesday, 05 February 2020 05:34 PM

    Don’t disgrace your motherland in front of bloody white suckers! Just come back and let your children be real lankans which you refuse as parents. We may be poor and hungry but we are lions In our hearts. Don’t forget our history!

    Chux Wednesday, 05 February 2020 06:02 PM

    Pls tell Rajapaksha family as they are capable of everything

    Hemal Perera Thursday, 06 February 2020 01:29 AM

    Make a fresh application in the name of the Canadian born 15 month old child

    sunil vijaya Thursday, 06 February 2020 02:42 AM

    how many CONNED their way to canada from 1983 and now live in toronto and demanding justice, equal rights and what not. if expat canadians return to sri lanka belonging into all communities why fear a return?. in fact no one will be bothered about this family. they can live in peace. this is the way UNQUALIFIED people enter canada as there is no other means but to CON their way in and they are the ones who shout CRY FOUL!!!! and human rights violations.

    ram Thursday, 06 February 2020 02:59 AM

    by sending this family from Canada to Sri Lanka, Canada is making them to move from advanced thinking to backward thinking

    ram Thursday, 06 February 2020 03:00 AM

    if this family is a good citizen and accept Canadian values, they should not be send back to face danger

    cheers Thursday, 06 February 2020 05:13 AM

    Do not insult your motherland for your own benefit in a foreign land. Tamils in Canada has done so much and most of them are illegal, asylum seekers who is a pain to the Canadian government.

    anton Thursday, 06 February 2020 07:54 AM

    Yes u will run down Sri Lanka and get the PR. Once u are settled down, u will come to Sri Lanka and try to show off, with a false accent and lot of air about. Then u will feel very safe to visit Sri Lanka

    Ajja Thursday, 06 February 2020 08:16 AM

    Aj..Fernando is a given name and a surname common in Spain, Portugal, Italy, France, ... there during the Portuguese occupation)and not a Sinhalese surname pls. I wish the Fernando family will finally get a positive reply from the Canadian government to live there.Mr.Fernando,If you are a peaceful citizen you have nothing to fear and can live any where in the world...

    Prem Nalin Thursday, 06 February 2020 10:28 AM

    Thousands of people from the third-world countries somehow enter the first world and write/say something to stay there


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