Union staff and hundreds of students show support for #DontDeportLuqman

Bramber House is currently being occupied

Yesterday, a group of Sussex students barricaded themselves into the top floor of Bramber House, locking themselves in and bearing flags and banners. The occupation is in the name of of former Sussex student Luqman Onikosi, who faces deportation despite suffering from a potentially life-threatening chronic liver disease which will not be treated in his home country of Nigeria.

After graduating, Luqman went on to research and organise various events for the university, including Black History Month events, I Too Am Sussex campaigns, and events calling for the decolonisation of universities.

Today, hundreds of Sussex students gathered on campus to protest peacefully outside Bramber House following the creation of a Facebook event for the cause. The supporters delivered food to the occupiers, and rallied for the cause during lectures. Library Square was also covered in chalk etchings declaring “don’t deport Luqman”.

In addition to this, the full-time elected officers of the Student’s Union have issued a statement regarding Luqman’s case, in which they offer their support. They say: “We support students’ rights to protest peacefully about issues that matter to them.

“Current immigration policies make international students feel unwelcome in our country and watched on our campuses.

“We support students’ calls for Luqman to be allowed to remain in this country as we fear that if he is forced to return to Nigeria he will be unable to access the vital health care he needs.”

Security are not allowing anyone else to enter the area at the top of Bramber House which is currently being occupied, meaning that the SU student media team have had to interview them through the doors. Occupiers have locked themselves in and created a barricade, and show no signs of moving today. Seminar rooms on floor 2, Eat Central, Dine Central, and Co-Op remain open as usual.