Thursday, 27 April 2017

An Offensive Decision

Bent And Twisted Moral Compasses

Every so often decision are made by bureaucrats which defy common sense.  We use that term deliberately.  There are some things which are beyond the comprehension of the ordinary bloke.  And so it has come to pass in New Zealand in a matter of deportation.

An immigration official has made a decision not to deport a twice-convicted sex offender, whose victims have included young girls.  This chap--an immigrant--has been allowed to remain in New Zealand, provided he does not re-offend over the next five years.  Cynics have opened up by asking the question that is begged loudly and insistently: what would it take for an immigrant to be deported?  Let's think.  Mass murder? Spitting on an immigration official? Refusing to vote for the Greens?  Unreasonable and stupid questions, we hear you mutter.  Quite.  Immigration New Zealand appears to be nonsensical, stupid, without rhyme or reason.  Unreasonable and stupid bureaucrats deserve to be mocked in the same vein in which they have assailed and mocked their fellow citizens, whom they ultimately, in this life, serve.

In 2015 Sultan Ali Abdul Ali Akbari was jailed for two years and one month for five charges of indecent acts on girls aged 8 and 10 and indecently assaulting an 18-year-old.  A man who emigrated to New Zealand has been convicted twice for sex offending since his arrival in 2012 - including while on bail - but will not be deported if his record stays clean for the next five years.  The decision by immigration officials has been criticised, particularly as the man did not complete any rehabilitation programmes or offence-related courses in prison.

The Herald can reveal that Sultan Ali Abdul Ali Akbari arrived in New Zealand from Afghanistan in October 2012 on a resident visa.  In February 2013 Akbari indecently assaulted a woman and was convicted.  Then in 2015 he was jailed for two years and one month for five charges of indecent acts on girls aged 8 and 10 and indecently assaulting an 18-year-old.  That offending happened while Akbari was on bail awaiting trial on the 2013 charge.

At sentencing in the Auckland District Court a pre sentence report stated Akbari's risk of reoffending was "moderate to high".  "They assess your risk of harm as high - noting in particular an escalation in offending," said Judge Kevin Glubb, also Akbari showed no remorse.  He imposed a sentence of two years and one month in prison, saying the offending was "serious".  [NZ Herald]
 This matter is so egregious and inflammatory that the Minister of Immigration, Michael Woodhouse has taken extraordinary action.
Immigration Minister Woodhouse said he would take steps to improve the decision making authority for cases involving residence class visa holders convicted of a criminal offence.  "I have made my expectations very clear when it comes to deportation decisions involving offending of this nature and those expectations are not being met.  So I am temporarily suspending Immigration NZ's decision-making authority until I have confidence that the decisions being made are consistent with my expectations.  This course of action follows today's New Zealand Herald article regarding an individual whose liability for deportation was suspended, despite the severity of the offending."

Woodhouse said he would likely return the decision-making authority to Immigration NZ within a fortnight, as long as he could be assured the process would align with his expectations.  [NZ Herald]
We acknowledge that we don't have all the facts and all the data.  But this decision by a bureaucrat (which now cannot be appealed or changed) exercising the power of the Minister of Immigration is so outlandish that one struggles to come up with any kind of justification for it.  Unless . . . Unless . . .  Sultan Ali Abdul Ali Akbari pled that if he were returned to Afghanistan he would be killed--and so exercised moral blackmail over the nameless bureaucrat.

One hopes the bureaucrat-without-moral-spine will be shipped off to Siberia as a salutary warning to all his colleagues.  For if the collective moral compass of Immigration Department officials is so rusted and decayed that it can be twisted by fatuous appeals to pity, it requires polishing up.  We submit that losing one's position would clean up the collective moral compass instantly.  Slapping the offensive bureaucrat with a wet bus ticket would not.  The responsibility now lies firmly with Minister Woodhouse.  Our eyes are now transfixed upon him.

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