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Thembie Simelane campaign PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Tuesday, 28 February 2012 15:50

Campaign to stop deportation of Thembie Rebecca SimelaneHome Office Ref No: S1439103/6

The Zimbabwe Vigil is campaigning to prevent the deportation of a Swaziland friend Thembie Rebecca Simelane. Thembie and other Swazis attended the Vigil on 18th February to get advice and help on restarting the Swazi Vigil.

 

She is due to be forcibly removed from the UK on Virgin Atlantic flight VS 601 to Johannesburg at 19.25 hrs on Monday 27th February and then onwards to Swaziland.

 

The Vigil believes that Thembie will be at considerable risk if returned to Swaziland. It is Africa’s last absolute monarchy and is under Africa’s longest-running state of emergency. There is no political freedom, rule of law or respect for women and our Swazi friends talk of grinding poverty, hunger, no jobs, no medicine in hospitals, let alone sheets for hospital beds.  The population is small and Thembie’s return is likely to be known by those in control.

What you can do to help

1.     Contact Virgin Atlantic Airways, particularly by phone and fax as this ties up their phone lines and sends a strong message. Phone Head Office: 0844 811 0000, 0844 811 0000 fax: 0844 209 8708 and email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it to urge them not to carry out the removal of Thembi Rebecca Simelane on Virgin flight VS 601 at 19.25 hrs on on Monday 27th February from Heathrow UK to Johannesburg, South Africa. Ask the airline to refuse to take Thembi on their flight, explain that Thembi is being forcibly removed against her will. If the person you speak to at the airline cannot help, ask to speak to someone in higher authority.

2.     Please also contact MPs: Email or fax letters to Damian Green, Theresa May to urge for the removal to be stopped. It is more important and powerful to write a simple letter in your own words. Please remember to include Thembi's home office reference number in all your letters – S1439103/6

Addresses:
Damian Green, Immigration Minister. Email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ,  Fax: 020 7219 0904

Theresa May, Home Secretary. Email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , Fax: 020 7035 4745

 

3.     Kenya Airways recently refused to take someone being deported to DRC after emails were sent copying in representatives of the pilots' union for the airline and asking for the pilot to be informed.  Attached is a directory listing pilot union addresses internationally which can be used to contact pilots unions.  Below is a sample letter you can send to Richard Branson, copying it to pilots’ unions.

 

Email to: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

CC: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ; This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ; This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ; This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ; This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ; This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ; This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ; This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ; This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 

“Dear Richard Branson

Re: Thembie Rebecca Simelane: forced removal to Swaziland Monday 27/2/12 via Johannesburg aboard Virgin Atlantic Airways VS601 at 19.25 hrs

I wish for the captain of the above flight to know that there will be an asylum seeker being returned to Swaziland via Johannesburg against her will.  I urge you to refuse to send her back to Swaziland where she will be at risk of violence and ill-treatment.

Thembie Rebecca Simelane has been detained pending removal to Swaziland on Monday 27th February 2012 via Johannesburg aboard Virgin Atlantic Airways VS601 at 19.25 hrs. The Vigil believes that Thembie will be at considerable risk if returned to Swaziland. It is Africa’s last absolute monarchy and is under Africa’s longest-running state of emergency. There is no political freedom, rule of law or respect for women and our Swazi friends talk of grinding poverty, hunger, no jobs, no medicine in hospitals, let alone sheets for hospital beds.  The population is small and Thembie’s return is likely to be known by those in control.

Other airlines have chosen to take a stand against being complicit in human rights violations, by refusing to carry people being removed by force from the UK.  I ask you to consider your company's reputation and refuse to allow Thembie to board. 

I am copying this email to members of the International Federation of Air Line Pilots Associations, the Air Line Pilots' Association South Africa and the British Air Line Pilots Association.”

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How can you help?

The Zimbabwe Vigil exists entirely on donations from the public and well wishers. You can help us by donating via a deposit into our account Thank you.