Children of appellant in KO (Nigeria) achieve success in European Court of Human Rights

Friday 25 February 2022

The applicant children were represented by Sonali Naik QC and Helen Foot, of the Garden Court Chambers Immigration Team, instructed by Oluwole Osibona of Freemans Solicitors.

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The four British children of the appellant in KO(Nigeria) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2018] UKSC 53 have succeeded in obtaining leave to remain for their father, the revocation of his deportation order, and costs in the sum of £6,000, following an application to the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg which resulted in a friendly settlement between the parties.

In KO and others v the United Kingdom, no. 22225/19, the four applicants, who are aged between 8 and 16, applied to the ECtHR on 18 April 2019, and their case was communicated on 30 June 2021. The question for the parties was, having regard to the Court’s case-law (for example, Boultif v Switzerland no. 54273/00 and Üner v Netherlands no. 46410/99), would the deportation of their father KO to Nigeria constitute a disproportionate interference with the right to respect for the applicants’ family life enshrined in Article 8 of the Convention? KO had successfully argued in the Supreme Court that the assessment of “unduly harsh” in section 117C of the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002 should be child-centred and not take into account parental misconduct. However, his appeal was dismissed on its facts in the Supreme Court judgment dated 24 October 2018.

The applicants’ case in Strasbourg resulted in a friendly settlement declaration, signed by the applicants and the UK Government, under which the Government agreed to revoke KO’s deportation order, grant him 30 months’ leave to remain and pay the applicants £6,000 in costs.

The decision of the Court (Fourth Section Committee) can be found here.

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