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Inga wins her fight for citizenship with Home Office

June 5, 2018 9:00 AM

Longstanding Liberal Democrat Councillor Inga Lockington wins her UK citizenship fight with the Home Office.

Denied citizenship by the Home Office despite having, lived in the UK since 1979, been granted indefinite leave to remain and been a serving Councillor for 19 years, Inga Lockington's story received the widespread attention of the British and overseas media.

Inga Lockington

As has been widely reported, the Home Office; once described as 'not fit for purpose' and still reeling from the Windrush scandal, hardly enhanced their reputation for handling immigration applications, backed down and contacted Inga and advised her that, "following reconsideration of her case, her citizenship application will be granted".

Home Office spokesperson added, 'We have also taken the opportunity to apologise to her for the initial decision. Guidance has been reissued to reinforce the importance of consideration of wider immigration status in all cases for citizenship".

Former Mayor of Ipswich, Inga decided to apply for UK citizenship following the Brexit vote in 2016 spending the required £1282 on her application. The Home Office rejected it, citing lack of evidence that she was permanently resident in the UK, and refunded her only £80. Residents and politicians in the town were rightly shocked by the treatment of Inga, who has dedicated years of her life to the people of Ipswich and Suffolk.

In the recent Ipswich Borough Council election, Inga topped the poll once again in the St Margaret's Ward and took over 50% of the vote; her largest share to date.

Fellow Suffolk County Councillor, Caroline Page, Leader of the Liberal Democrats at the County Council, said : "This was truly a case of Brexit madness. Inga is well-known for her tireless work on behalf of all those she represents. Yet, as an EU national, she was unable to vote in the EU referendum - and then told she was not welcome as a citizen in the country she has served so selflessly for so long. What kind of country has Britain become, that it turns its back on twenty years of public service from a EU national and declares her unfit to be a citizen?

If Inga was ineligible, who on earth stands a chance?

There are many other people in Suffolk in a similar situation to Inga - it is an expensive and frightening one to be in. Suffolk LibDems urge the County Council to provide support through the Suffolk Law Centre to support our residents in retaining their Citizens' Rights "

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