Man’s bid to enter Seychelles on false pretexts fails


Although he had a return ticket, by the time the authorities found he did not meet the necessary requirements for entry, the plane that brought him had already left, and given there are no detention facilities at the airport, the man was kept at the central police station until Thursday March 21 when he took the next flight to Nairobi where he had come from.

The principal secretary for immigration and civil status Charles Bastienne said this in an interview with Nation yesterday.
He said the man was therefore not deported because technically he never entered the country in the first place.

“The man said he wanted political asylum after he had already been declared a prohibited immigrant. You cannot ask for political asylum after you have been denied entry as a prohibited immigrant,” said Mr Bastienne.

He said the man could not have been allowed in as a visitor because he did not meet the requirements for entry as one, for example he had neither a hotel reservation nor money to sustain himself.

“Every week some travellers are declared prohibited immigrants,” said Mr Bastienne, who said Msamirizi never declared to the authorities that he is a journalist.

“He said he was some sort of businessman working for a company in Burundi and he initially never said that he was running away from his country as he claimed later.

Asked how come a Tunisian Sakher El Materi – allegedly wanted in his country – has been allowed to stay, Mr Bastienne said the Tunisian was in the first place not declared an illegal immigrant on arrival as his family of five met the necessary requirements for entry.

He said that the attorney general’s office, the Ministry of Home Affairs and Transport and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs are assessing his case whether to allow him continued stay here or not in the light of the problems in Tunisia where there is at the moment no stable government.

Mr El Materi is not asking to be allowed to become a citizen of Seychelles but merely seeking refuge here, so the government after assessing his situation and doing the necessary investigations will decide whether to grant him a resident’s permit or if he is interested in investing in Seychelles he will be required to have a work permit so that he continues to live and work here.
Seychelles does not have an extradition treaty with Tunisia.

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