Anorak News | An Unsafe Seat

An Unsafe Seat

by | 14th, September 2004

‘HOW dare Liaqat Ali still be alive! It’s nothing less than an outrage.

Liaqat Ali, 18 Harris Road, Manchester, M13 0PX

That’s pretty much the attitude of the Mail and Express, which both focus on the man who was granted asylum in Britain after he convinced immigration officials that he’d be killed if he ever returned to his native Pakistan.

The thing is that he has been to Pakistan, having spent 18 days in the county to celebrate his son’s wedding.

And since he’s now returned to Blighty, we can say, with a degree of confidence, that he’s not dead.

No-one even tried to shoot him, drown him, blow him up or even poison him. No-one even found him.

And that’s no mean feat because Ali – a Liberal Democrat councillor for the Longsight ward of Manchester – is said by the Express to have attended a number of “high-profile engagements” and appeared in the local Pakistani press.

Happily, the Express had more luck than the nefarious forces out to get Ali, and caught up with him back home in Manchester.

“For my son’s wedding I took the risk and because my mother had fallen sick,” he said.

“I did feel threatened, but no-one knew I was there and I kept moving around all the time. I have broken no laws and believe most fathers would have done what I did.”

Indeed they would have done, although most British fathers would have done it disguised as a comic book hero.

But his point is taken, although it’s not one supported by former Labour councillor Sajjid Hussain, who lost his seat to Ali.

The Mail reports that Hussain has now called on the Home Office to review Ali’s case.

“I know asylum seekers who fear they will be killed if they return to their homeland,” says Hussain. “They would not go back for any reason.”

Oh, come on, let’s be reasonable. Surely they’d go back for their son’s wedding? What about an ill mother? A dying aunty? A three-legged dog with sore gums? A good party..?’

Posted: 14th, September 2004 | In: Tabloids Comment | TrackBack | Permalink