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Bristol rugby team fighting deportation of gay teammate to Kenya

An LGBTI-inclusive rugby team in Bristol is fighting to prevent the UK Home Office from deporting a gay teammate to Kenya.

Bristol Bisons member Kenneth Macharia’s asylum claim was denied. He is now being held at a detention center and faces deportation to Kenya.

Gay sex is illegal in Kenya. Those prosecuted face 14 years in prison.

Teammate Andrew Holmes launched a petition on change.org. He called on Home Secretary Sajid Javid, to step in to stop Macharia’s deportation.

‘Ken is deeply concerned about being deported to Kenya, where he would face persecution, and he wishes to stay in the UK to contribute to society’ Holmes also wrote.

‘Ken’s story is yet another example of the Home Office ignoring the risks that LGBT people face in multiple countries around the world.’

As of early Tuesday (20 November), 3,300 people had signed the petition.

Macharia arrived in the UK in 2009 and lived here on a work visa, according to the petition.

Ken is a quiet, kind, and caring person and he is one of the most loved people at our rugby club. Our team would not be the same without his warm character’, Holmes wrote.

Bristol Bisons is one of the UK’s largest LGBTI-inclusive rugby teams.

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Author: Rik Glauert