The Battle – Theresa May versus Maya the Cat

The Palaver Hut

Home Secretary Theresa May’s ‘Cat’ quip is making waves in the media world.

Ms. May told the Conservative party conference that illegal immigrants abuse the Human Rights Act to fight deportation from Britain. She illustrated her case by citing the example of a Bolivian who resisted deportation on the grounds he owned a cat, Maya. She talked about “The illegal immigrant who cannot be deported because – I am not making this up – he had a pet cat.”

The message that Ms. May passed across was that separating the Bolivian man from Maya the cat risked serious emotional consequences as the pet was evidence of a family life in the UK, so the cat owner couldn’t be deported for that reason.

Justice Secretary Kenneth Clarke didn’t agree with Ms. May’s claims. “I’ll have a small bet with her that nobody has ever been refused deportation on the grounds of the ownership of a cat,” he said.

A spokesman for the Royal Courts of Justice said that was not the reason for the tribunal decision in that case and that the Home Office had failed to apply its own rules for dealing with unmarried partners of people settled in the UK.
But assuming that the man wasn’t deported because he owned the cat, why use a single court blunder to scrap the right to family life?

What Ms. May was trying to convey to us was simply that a Human Right law was used to prevent a man from being deported from the UK because he had a pet cat named Maya.

With due respect M’am, this doesn’t make sense. It doesn’t add up because – if I’m not making this up, there is nothing to prove that Maya the cat is a British citizen.

Neither is there anything to show that Maya the cat couldn’t be deported with the owner. So on that basis alone, I honestly think this ‘Cat’ quip is shockingly disrespectful to the rights of individuals to a family life.
An apology for the mistake would be ideal.

Attempting to use this bogus excuse to scrap the Human Rights Act illustrates the failure of the justice system in dealing with migrants who have broken the law and should be removed as required by the immigration law.

In fact, I’m not making this up, evidence from personal experience shows the Immigration Court of appeal and the Home Office asylum decision-making officers don’t always investigate individual asylum cases. They only do so in exceptional cases that grip national interest.

There is proof that facts from individual asylum cases are routinely judged on face value, which has resulted in thousands of inhumane deportations and deaths.

So on that basis, I urge our powerful, honourable, influential, authoritative, formidable, eloquent, strong Home Secretary Theresa May to do whatever is needed to drop this attempt to scrap the Human Rights Act which will take away the right to a family life in the UK. We can’t afford to deprive children of their parents. Neither can we afford to deprive people of their partners.

The right to family life must be protected at all costs.

By Joseph Spencer