Refugee loses trust of Winnipeg’s Somali commu..

Halkaan ka akhri

Refugee loses trust of Winnipeg’s Somali community

Some members of Winnipeg’s Somalian community are torn about what should be done with a refugee who has a history of criminal violence.

Mohamed Said Jama, 40, is in custody at Stony Mountain Institution.

The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) wants to deport him but Jama’s lawyer has said his client fears he will be killed if returned because he is the son of a reviled former high-ranking Somali military official.

The government’s first attempt to deport him failed last October when the plane turned back after landing in Kenya. Jama’s lawyer said the plane did not fly on to Somalia because of concerns about Jama’s safety.

Abdikheir Ahmed, a refugee from Somalia and the program coordinator for the Immigration and Refugee Community Organization in Manitoba, said no one in the Somalian community wants to talk about Jama because they feel betrayed by him.

That’s because Jama ruined his second chance after the original deportation failed.

After returning to Canada Jama violated one of the conditions of his release when he failed to appear a monthly check-in.

He was declared dangerous and authorities re-arrested him March 19.

Ahmed said the breach makes the Somalian community reluctant to welcome Jama back into their fold.

Last year, elders and members of the community signed a petition in support of Jama staying in Canada.

Now, those same people don’t like to talk about him.

“I signed for him in good faith. I am hesitant to do that again,” Ahmed said.

At the same time, the local community doesn’t want Jama deported to a country overrun by a violent and dangerous extremist group.

“He is not likely to survive if returned back to Somalia. People are killed every day,” Ahmed said. “He’s likely to be used in a different way with a North American accent [that he has picked up since living here since 1991].

“He would be killed and seen as a spy.”

Instead of spending money to fly Jama to Somalia, the government should use it try to rehabilitate him while he is here in custody, Ahmed suggested.

Source: CBC News

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