A Commonwealth soldier who misplaced each legs in Afghanistan has spoken of the “soul destroying” battle he persevered to stick within the UNITED KINGDOM as he sponsored a invoice to waive visa charges.
Pa Njie, now 31, used to be serving with the Cheshire Regiment when he was blown 200ft into the air by a roadside bomb whilst finishing up a patrol in Afghanistan in 2010.
Elderly 19 whilst the blast went off, he have been a part of a unit protecting a village faculty from the Taliban in Helmand Province.
After being medically discharged from the army, Mr Njie used to be forced to “pay lots” to qualify for a visa that would permit him to stay in the united states of america.
“It was once soul destroying,” Mr Njie told The Telegraph. “I put my life on the line for this us of a and that i used to be blown up in Afghanistan. OK, i used to be doing my task, but the bare minimum the home Place Of Business and the MoD Ministry of Defence may do whilst you call to mind all the sacrifices we have made would be to begin with waiving the charges for Commonwealth veterans and their households.”
Mr Njie, who has gone on to represent the united kingdom on the Invictus Games in Toronto and Sydney, added: “My story is certainly one of loads who have been through this. Going forward, one thing has to modify.”
At Present, foreigners who’ve served in the Military are charged £2,389 for visas to regularise their immigration standing. As Soon As fees for dependents are taken into account, the fees can overall greater than £10,000 for a family of 4.
Mr Njie has spoken out because the Nationality and Borders Invoice goes through Parliament. Johnny Mercer, the former Conservative defence minister, and Dan Jarvis, the Labour MP, are spearheading a pass-birthday celebration marketing campaign to scrap the “steep” charges for ex-staff who wish to regularise their immigration status.
the two men, who’re both British Military veterans themselves, recently unsuccessfully tabled an modification to the Invoice that might see the charges lifted for all Commonwealth veterans who have served a minimum of five years within the UK military, in addition as taking out the fees charged for visas for their spouses and youngsters.
Mr Mercer said “it broke my middle” whilst MPs did not again the amendment earlier this month, as he claimed that for the federal government, “in the event you’re a veteran, or a Foreign and Commonwealth soldier who has literally given his limbs for the country, they in truth don’t give a toss”.
He delivered that at the side of Mr Jarvis, they’re going to placed the modification at the 2d reading of the Invoice once more, “and wish colleagues don’t make the same mistake two times”.
Johnny Mercer and Dan Jarvis are major a move-celebration marketing campaign to scrap visa fees for Commonwealth squaddies who served Britain and want to settle here Credit: Geoff Pugh for The Telegraph/UK Parliament/Roger Harris
Mr Jarvis delivered that forcing Commonwealth veterans to pay hefty visa charges “beggars belief that any one who has served and sacrificed for our u . s . is compelled to pay extortionate fees just to settle within the us of a they’ve risked their lives for”.
“The Government will have to hang its head in disgrace that they’ve allowed what is a patently unjust scenario to persist for a lot too lengthy,” he stated.
Mr Njie now works as an account supervisor at Venture Motorsport, a charity that works with those suffering from military operations thru game. James Cameron, the charity’s leader government, brought that after Mr Njie lost his legs “he did so having long past to war for this u . s .”.
He said: “after we met him, an Invictus medal winner, it simply hadn’t came about to me that he’d needed to pay for his visa. Our foreign and commonwealth squaddies deserve higher from us. I’m ashamed that he’s been handled on this means.”
An MoD spokesman stated: “we are hugely thankful for the contribution of all our Militia.
“We work closely with our non-UNITED KINGDOM recruits to be certain that they’re fully acutely aware of how they and their families can settle in the UNITED KINGDOM, and the prices concerned. This contains working with the Joining Forces Credit Score Union to provide monetary advice, financial savings packages and loans to help group of workers pay for visa prices.
“In Advance this year, we launched a session to discover what more could be done to toughen non-UK provider team of workers with this procedure and its prices. we will publish the response to the consultation in due direction.”