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Swindon mum still waiting for a visa to stay
THE mother of a seven-month-old baby who faces deportation is still waiting for the UK Border Agency to rule on her visa application – which is among a backlog of 16,000 cases.
Jorlie Cammack, 26, faces being separated from her husband Mark and son Colin.
Mark, 40, says they have supplied documentation for her visa extension on four separate occasions after the agency repeatedly told them it had not received Colin’s birth certificate and other paperwork.
The couple, from Cricklade, have sent items by registered post and in the latest effort to have their case dealt with emailed scanned documents.
An official replied two weeks ago to say their case was being examined.
It emerged this week that the UKBA has a backlog of more than 16,000 applications from migrants seeking permission to stay in Britain, some of them dating back almost a decade.
The cases were uncovered by John Vine, the chief inspector of borders and immigration, who said the situation was “completely unacceptable”.
Mark said: “The last time we sent them all the paperwork was two weeks ago.
“We received a reply thanking us for the quick reply and evidence and saying they would investigate, but we have heard nothing since.
“We are anxious to know what’s happening as we are in limbo and we don’t know if they are going to turn up here. It doesn’t surprise me at all to hear about the backlog.
“What is really frustrating is that other people have applied in the same situation we are in and have got their visas straight away.”
The couple say they have been the victims of a series of blunders by the troubled agency.
Mark, an HGV driver, married Jorlie at Swindon Register Office just over a year ago after they met on an internet dating site.
Jorlie returned to the UK from the Philippines in September 2011 on a six-month visa, settling with her husband in Saxon Close.
Her first request to remain was initially refused but the agency later approved it after the couple contacted North Wiltshire MP James Gray.
Jorlie then applied for a two-year extension to her stay.
They sent off the documentation to the agency in January of that year and received an acknowledgement of the application, which was followed by a letter via Mr Gray’s office several months later, apologising for the delay amid a backlog of “complex cases”.
The grounds for the refusal of Jorlie’s leave to remain were her alleged late application and a failure to provide a copy of an English language test and Colin’s birth certificate.
But the couple said they had supplied both numerous times and were originally within the deadline.
The UKBA said: “We have agreed to reconsider the application once the correct birth certificate is provided.
“Ms Cammack will face no action from the UKBA while her case is being considered.”