A 23-year-old Nigerian woman has launched an appeal to the Home Office/UK Visa & Immigration to allow for her sister to visit the UK from Nigeria for a lifesaving stem cell (bone marrow) transplant.
May Brown (pictured) is currently undergoing Leukaemia treatment at King’s College Hospital in London and is said to be distraught by the decision. She is now pleading with authorities to allow her sister entry to ‘save my life...
Ms Brown, who is married to a former British soldier was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukaemia last year. Consultants have confirmed her only chance of survival is to receive a stem cell transplant from a donor with a matching tissue type as hers.
The patient’s sister Martha, who resides in Nigeria, is a perfect match. However, she was denied entry in to the UK as she did not meet the economic requirements laid out by the Home Office. Her monthly earnings of 65,000 Naira (£222) per month suggest she doesn't have sufficient funds available to cover her travel costs.
The letter from UK Visas & Immigration state "I am not satisfied that you are a genuine visitor and will leave the UK at the end of your visit or that you have sufficient funds available to cover your costs whilst in the UK without working or accessing public funds."
Additional paperwork submitted included confirmation that Martha's trip was to be funded entirely by her sister. However, Ms Brown’s sponsorship of her sister’s entire expenses have also been rejected by officials, who fear Martha will not return back to Nigeria – despite having a family of her own there.
"My sister Martha has two children in Nigeria who will be looked after by our Grandmother during her visit to the UK. She has no desire to re-locate here. She is only visiting to help save my life, the life of her sister." said May, who has been in hospital for the last three months.
More than 1,500 people have now signed the petition, launched by the blood cancer charity African Caribbean Leukaemia Trust (ACLT), asking the Home Office to reverse the decision.
You can sign here