Students occupying a building on the Falmer campus this afternoon in protest at the deportation of former student Luqman Onikosi have pledged to remain until the university supports their cause.
— Tara (@taraegrimm) March 9, 2016
Scores of people have locked themselves in and are waving flags from the top of Bramber House, protesting the Home Office’s decision send Mr Onikosi back to Nigeria.
Mr Onikosi’s deportation has been described as a “death sentence”, as he suffers from a chronic liver condition caused by Hepatitis B which his two brothers have died of.
He is requesting to stay in the UK on medical grounds as the NHS has more effective treatments for it.
Mr Onikosi told the Independent: “In Nigeria, there isn’t the medical infrastructure required to keep me alive. My battle to stay in the UK on medical grounds is, therefore, a fight to stay alive.”
Speaking from inside the occupation of the Bramber House conference centre, one student who wished to remain nameless said: “There was a planned demonstration today and students decided to occupy Bramber House after that.
“The doors are locked with bike locks so university management can’t get in.
“The university kicked Luqman off his course when the Home Office told them to. We are occupying to put pressure on the university to stop the government sending Luqman to his death.”
A University of Sussex spokesperson said: “We understand the group of students are supporters of Mr Onikosi, a former student of the University.
“The students are currently based in a conference room in one of our buildings.
“We are, and have always been, very sorry to know of Mr Onikosi’s illness. The status of Mr Onikosi’s visa is a directive from the Home Office and the University is not able to influence that decision in any way.”
The Home Office says an independent immigration judge found Mr Onikosi had no right to remain.
LIKE WHAT WE DO? HELP US TO DO MORE OF IT BY DONATING HERE.