OO (Sudan) and JM (Uganda) v. Secretary of State for the Home Department. Accessed September 16, 2020.
- Category: Case Law
- Source: National Authorities
- Subject: Discretion,Deportation,Asylum/Refugee,Discrimination,Documentation status,Homophobia,Homosexuality,Law/Legistation,Sexual Orientation,Violence
- Place: Sudan,Uganda
- Year: 2020
- File: cases,GBR_CA_CIV,4ba775c52.html
These two appeals from the Asylum and Immigration Tribunal (“the AIT”) are being dealt with together because they both raise an issue identified by Aikens LJ when granting permission to appeal. M is a Ugandan citizen, now aged 34. He arrived in the United Kingdom in August 2000 and was granted to leave to enter as a visitor. He overstayed and claimed asylum. The evidence on appeal was that he realised that he was homosexual in his late teens. He went to Kenya to learn the art of hairdressing and beauty care, and while there he attended gay night clubs and bars and had a homosexual relationship. He then returned to Uganda and opened a hairdressing and beauty salon, which he ran for a number of years. The AIT noted that he was obviously effeminate in manner, but it found that he experienced no hostility in Uganda from either the authorities or seemingly from any quarter. He did not have any homosexual relationships while in Uganda and he claimed that this was because he could not have such a relationship, at least not openly, without suffering persecution. There was no dispute that he had never been arrested in Uganda, but he said that this was because he had not formed any gay relationship there. The appellant, OO, is a citizen of Sudan who arrived in this country in May 2004 and claimed asylum. He is now aged 36. His evidence was that he had gradually realised that he was homosexual; this had lead him to being repudiated by his family in Sudan although he was allowed to remain in the family home. The AIT seems to have accepted that he had had some form of sexual relationship with a man while in the Sudan but not that it was one involving anal penetration. The relevance of that is that it is penetrative anal intercourse with a man or a woman which is a criminal offence in Sudan. Once in this country he had had a number of casual, discreet, homosexual relationships. The AIT found that, if returned to Sudan, he would conduct his sexual activities discreetly and that he could reasonably be expected to tolerate such a situation so that the test in J was met. It also found that no one had been prosecuted for the offence of anal intercourse in Sudan and that, while there was societal discrimination against homosexuals there, there was no official discrimination against them. Thus the appellant would not be at risk of persecution or prosecution if returned.