David Kipkoech Keter Hold His Six-month-old Daughter
David Kipkoech can sigh with relief after the Canadian Government on Wednesday, June 7, deferred his deportation to Kenya and gave him six months to resolve his immigration issues.
The deferral letter ensures he stays in the country with his family until December 2023. The news came as a great relief to him as he was set to be deported on Friday, June 9, a move that he feared could have separated him from his family.
"I was so happy when I got the deferral letter though I only have a little bit of time," he stated. "I am not 100 per cent happy. I still have a long way to go, so I cannot rest," he added.
In April, Kipkoech was distressed to receive a deportation notice and feared he would have to separate from his children, a son and daughter, both of whom are Canadian citizens. While appearing in court, his lawyer defended him saying the government should allow him to stay in the country to look after his family. He added that Kipkoech would have a difficult time returning to Canada if deported.
"He is a young person and has a family here. He is motivated to work and there is no question that if he were to stay here, he would be a contributing member of this society. As his lawyer, my goal is to see him stay and take care of his family. Deportations by their nature tend to be permanent unless you can demonstrate by writing to the minister and asking for permission to come back in," the lawyer told the court.
Kipkoech arrived in Canada in 2016 on a visitor visa and then sought asylum. During his stay, he worked at a food processing facility and a nursing home. He was hoping to secure refugee status in Canada, but the Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Department denied his request and concluded that it was safe for him to go back to Kenya. Kipkoech feared for his life upon return to Kenya due to remarks he had made earlier.