Dr Luke Ong was five months away from becoming a GP when he made a single mistake with his application to remain in the United Kingdom. A year ago he had a steady job working as a trainee GP in Greater Manchester and was scheduled to pass in February this year. He was in a relationship, had his own vehicle and everything was excellent.
Yet for the last eight months, it has been a living purgatory and his problems started towards the close of last year when he applied for indefinite permission to live in the United Kingdom.
He is from Singapore and was five months away from qualifying as a GP and had studied medicine at Manchester University, starting as a doctor in the NHS in 2012.
He scheduled an appointment and paid for it before his visa ran out. He thought everything was fine but in fact, the application is made when you attend the appointment, by which time his visa had been invalid for 18 days.
He was denied residency for that reason, and since then it’s been a struggle to change the ruling and an immigration judge ruled that it would not be proportionate to remove him, but the Home Office lodged an appeal.
His lawyer told him it is reviewing his initial application.
Everything flies in the face of common sense. NHS England is paying £100 million to recruitment agencies to get GPs to work in England and here he is, five months away from becoming a GP, and he’s being kicked out.
In the meantime, demand in the NHS is rising and falling.
He hasn’t been permitted to work since the first appointment and when he was told, his first thought was about all the patients he had scheduled for the coming week and who was going to see them.
He’s not allowed benefits so he’s been living off his savings and aid from his parents.
His mental health has declined and there have been days when he’s woken at 5 am, his heart racing, and thinking about what he should do, or whether they’re going to deport him or be detained. All of this has been constantly on his mind.
It put a lot of pressure on his relationship, which has now ended, partly because of the pressure he’s under.
Everything has ground to a standstill and it takes a lot to be resilient and for him to say that he’s going to carry on regardless of what happens.
If he can’t complete his training, everything will have been for nothing and he would have to go to another country, Singapore or Australia and start over again as a trainee.
He has loved the UK since he visited as a boy and when it came to university, his mind was set on the United Kingdom.
He took general practice because he liked having the opportunity to sit with patients and build up a connection.
It’s always nice to see what happens to them.
He can remember learning about the NHS at school in Singapore. It’s this huge system that takes care of you from when you’re born to your very last days.
You always have to pay something for healthcare in Singapore and the NHS is astounding and it’s unthinkable for other nations to have a method that gives you what you need when you need it.
And he’s so happy to have worked for it.
He feels he has a personal debt to the NHS. It has invested in him and it costs hundreds of thousands of pounds to train a GP from medical school through to qualification.
Some of that he paid for, but he’s immensely thankful and he actually wants to be able to give back to the NHS.
If you’ve ever been at the receiving end of the Home Office pen pushers, you couldn’t make up this stuff that happens and the left hand never knows what the right hand is doing.
Nobody knows how to use their brains and they treat people with limited regard and dignity, try reading their convoluted guidance for applications and this should be sorted so that it doesn’t have a long-term impression on his fate personally or professionally.
The home office is vile and we, as a country, are culpable for standing by and letting this authoritarian government get away with it and this man has devoted more to British society than some who were born here have.
In the meantime, Jeremy Hunt’s simple administrative error ends in a slap on the wrist and a public acknowledgement waives off everything.
This whole position is being replicated over and over again and is sick and the government should be ashamed of what they’re doing. There are some really obnoxious characters living in this country, they’re called the wealthy Tory patrons.
He has been in this country for a long time, he has paid his taxes like everybody that works and still, they can’t give him license to stay.
It’s time for the Head of the Commonwealth i.e. Queen Elizabeth II to intercede, after all, Singapore is part of the Commonwealth and he is a doctor, already giving back into the United Kingdom and deserves to stay.
Any blunder he has made was an honest one.
This should make people really cross, he has struggled so hard to get where he is and to give to a country that is not even his own, whereas there are many people from other nations who fraudulently make matrimonies to just get a visa to live in the United Kingdom.
Once they have that visa, they stay with their spouse for perhaps a year or so, they necessitate a divorce and are home and dry, immigration won’t touch them and they can stay even though the union ended.
He attempted to get a date before his visa ran out but the first possible time was after that and it shouldn’t matter what profession or occupation that person is in, anyone who has been here for that long and is making a contribution should be given proper consideration, so why can’t the Home Office use a little common sense?
Maybe he should have put his application in a little earlier to avoid all of this tension but the Home Office must take a more common sense approach as we are all inclined to neglect stuff, particularly being a doctor and working extremely long hours, after all, he was a doctor who was adding to society.
This is yet another unfortunate blunder by the Home Office. Who is dealing with this situation, whoever they are, they’re utterly inept and shouldn’t we have workers at the Home Office who can actually do their job correctly?
Makes you actually question what kind of people govern the United Kingdom and some of us are questioning what the hades are going on? Common sense and propriety went out the window in support of red tape.
This is total insanity and what a disgraceful misuse of resources to deport someone who wants to work in this country and has made a life for himself here and who has invested so much in our NHS, where is the common sense?
This is what normally occurs when the all-powerful and all-knowing single people out. These people are ruthless and it does become a living hell, but we see that in many other nations where civilians are brutally misrepresented.
The time and money it took to train this doctor are enormous and the Home Office wants to get rid of him, which is quite odd, some might believe, but it’s not, they actually don’t mind how much money it necessitated, they want him out because they have to make a stand.
The reason the Home Office has to make a stand is that they keep going on about how many immigrants are being allowed into our country, therefore if they make a big argument of this, people will then believe they’re doing something about it.
Nevertheless, removing one person does not eliminate all that should not be here, particularly those that come into the United Kingdom, sit on their backsides and do nothing, yet the government are prepared to give them houses and money for doing nothing at all.
This guy has strived really hard and they want to make him a scapegoat. One would have assumed that the nincompoops who keep shooting themselves in the foot would realise they will require a doctor.
But this is how we’re supposed to attract professionals to work in the NHS or any professional sector in the United Kingdom. Following this debacle, no one from overseas will want to come and train here again because they’ll be worried that they will be deported after.
Well done to our government and the abuse on immigration who I can see ultimately lettering their own eulogy which is weird indeed, seeing as they have simply addressed this poor man’s notice to maybe leave the country.
This is hellbound for the necropolis because the magnifications of their efforts will be the Home Office’s deterioration if they deport this man for simply doing his job. They can transport him back off to his country of origin but the stigma will still remain here in England.
Will that stigma wear off in time, I pretty much suspect not. Our relationships with other nations are already extremely tense and our government is not lily-white and virginal at all and it only takes one huge mistake by them to exhaust some of the ideas that the people of the United Kingdom have of them, which isn’t really much and this disaster will simply put them at the bottom of the league table.
This is an application of the law without any common sense, which is really damaging and corrupt.
What is wrong with the Home Office? They’re endangering peoples livelihood, have they nothing better to do with their time but to agitate peoples lives, people who are serving and giving to the United Kingdom and they still want to suck the blood from peoples body like blood-sucking zombies.