Toronto woman facing deportation to Uganda granted stay

A Toronto mother of two who was scheduled to be deported to Uganda on Saturday has been granted a stay of deportation.

Leatitia Nanziri says she is a lesbian and was forced to flee Uganda, where homosexuality is illegal, after she was outed. She also claims she was sexually assaulted by a police officer in Uganda.

Nanziri came to Canada and claimed refugee status, but was denied.

The matter was taken to court for review.

Nanziri's lawyer, Asiya Hirji, said a judge stayed her client's removal from Canada because the court had concerns an immigration officer might have made a mistake.

"I'm so happy I've been granted my stay of removal," Nanziri said. "I didn't want to go back to Uganda because my life would have been in danger. I'm so happy. My children are so happy."

Nanziri will be allowed to remain here until she gets another hearing in about six months.

Last week, Nanziri told CBC News that she was outed by her girlfriend's father and following that, police officers beat and raped her in November 2003 and January 2004.

She said she was six months pregnant by the time she landed in Toronto in June 2004. When she arrived in Canada she filed a claim for refugee status but was refused.

She also sought to remain in Canada on humanitarian and compassionate grounds, in 2005. That application was refused earlier this year, leading to the deportation order.

Canadian officials have raised questions about the woman's claim of being in danger due to her sexual orientation because Nanziri had a second child with a man.

Nanziri explained that she had hoped that relationship would make her life easier and she would no longer be alone.

"I'd never been happy…he promised me heaven on Earth," she said, adding that he left her when he found out about her sexual past.

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