HALT the deportation of JARPHET TENDO, a bisexual man, out of Canada to Uganda

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Dear Honourable Minister Ahmed Hussen & Canadian Federal Court,

It is with urgency that we, as a coalition of concerned Canadians, friends, allies and supporters of human rights write to request the immediate halt on a removal and deportation order for Mr. Jarphet Tendo client ID # 11033 55600 to Uganda, which is in effect.

BACKGROUND:                                                                                                       Mr. Tendo, 28, is a father to a 4 year daughter -Quinn Shanel Tendo, and identifies as a bisexual man. He fled Uganda and discreetly made it to Canada in April 2017, landed in Montreal, Quebec and made a refugee claim in Toronto, Ontario based on his sexual orientation as a bisexual man. His claim was rejected on August 21, 2017 based on credibility issues. He however faces danger, lack of protection, social exclusion and violence many sexual minorities face in Uganda.

COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT:                                                                                 Mr. Tendo is an active and contributing member within our Ugandan-Canadian communities across the Greater Toronto Area. He is also a member of The 519 Church Street-community center where he served as a Newcomer Orientation Assistant between 2017 and 2018, Black Coalition for AIDS Prevention’s LGBTQ program, Metropolitan Community Church of Toronto, Rainbow Refugee and Access Alliance Multicultural Centre. He is convicted of no criminal offences.

URGENT REQUEST:                                                                                                 We request that Canada’s immigration authorities review his case on humanitarian and compassionate grounds and the pre-risk removal assessment, and halt his deportation. Uganda today is facing homophobic/biphobic/transphobic killings which are encouraging hate and anti-LGBTQ culture to prevail.

CURRENT SITUATION IN UGANDA:                                                                        In the last few months and weeks, local and international media outlets have reported incidences of violence and intimidation towards LGBTQ individuals and their allies. A case in point:

>>On August 1, 2019, a young transgender woman Fahad Ssemugooma Kawere was beaten to death by motorcycle riders in Gombe, Wakiso district. https://www.facebook.com/KuchuTimes/photos/a.739385106117144/2404346462954325/?type=1&theater

>>On October 3, 2019, Security Minister Elly Tumwine claimed in a television interview that LGBTQ people are alleged terrorists. https://twitter.com/nbstv/status/1179676101800579074 

>>On October 4, 2019, an LGBTQ activist Brian Wasswa was beaten to death in Jinja district. According to Human Rights Watch. https://www.hrw.org/news/2019/10/15/uganda-brutal-killing-gay-activist

>>On October 14, 2019 Minister of Ethics and Integrity Simon Lokodo told Reuters media that parliament planned to introduce a bill that imposes a death for gay sex.  https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/oct/15/ugandan-mps-press-for-death-penalty-for-homosexual-acts

STAKES FOR CANADA:                                                                                  Canada, being a global leader in human rights, in our opinion, should not be sending a bisexual man back to a country that persecutes LGBTQ+ people as highlighted above. Unless we do all we can to help, Mr. Tendo will be sent back to a dangerous situation.

Mr. Tendo works hard to support his family back in Uganda, and the impact of his deportation on our social values may be greater. This is not in the best interest of the Government of Canada’s reputation abroad should anything happen to him.

Thank you for taking the time to hear our concerns. We trust that Government of Canada will halt Mr. Tendo’s deportation, review his case on compassionate and moral grounds and continue discussing how to CHOOSE FORWARD a future that is inclusive of all.

Tendo's Team                                                                                                          Toronto, ON Canada, October 16, 2019

“Let there be justice for all. Let there be peace for all. Let there be work, bread, water and salt for all. Let each know that for each the body, the mind and the soul have been freed to fulfill themselves.” - Nelson Mandela.