The Free Babar Ahmad campaign is encouraging supporters to increase the pressure on their MPs in light of the decision of the Backbench Business Committee this week to relegate the debate on the Babar Ahmad e-petition to Westminster Hall.
The Free Babar Ahmad (FBA) Campaign is overwhelmed by the response of the British public to the e-petition to put Babar Ahmad on trial in the UK. In just three months, a record breaking 140,529 individuals had signed the e-petition taking it to the top three on the e-petitions website when it closed.
These 140,529 individuals, irrespective of age, religious denomination and political belief, united in a common cause – to end Babar’s 7 years of pre-charge incarceration and prevent his extradition in favour of a UK prosecution.
In spite of the enormous public support for the matter, the Parliamentary Backbench Business Committee has refused to list this issue for a full debate in the main chamber of the House of Commons where it could be voted on by Members of Parliament; instead the motion has been relegated to form part of a pre-existing discussion on extradition, led by Dominic Raab MP, in Westminster Hall on 24th November 2011.
Whilst the FBA Campaign support Mr Raab’s well-founded concerns over UK extradition policy, over 140,500 individuals did not take the time and trouble to add their names to Babar’s petition only for this matter to be debated outside the Chamber rather than put to a vote, on the floor of the House.
Now they have raised their voices – through the correct channel – the FBA Campaign will not rest until they are properly heard. The FBA Campaign vows to make urgent contact with every MP representing each of these 140,529 signatories, to seek their support in securing proper consideration of Babar’s plight and its causes, in the Chamber of the House of Commons. If time cannot be allotted in the parliamentary schedule pre-Christmas, then we will seek early inclusion in the New Year’s parliamentary scheduling.
The family of Babar Ahmad stated:
“We are deeply moved that, in the midst of a recession, more people have shown Parliament their concern over a British citizen being detained for over seven years without charge or trial, than lowering fuel prices. They deserve nothing less than to have their concerns properly debated and put to a vote.”
“Other e-petitions which have secured over 100,000 signatures have been debated in the main chamber of the House of Commons. The decision to treat this e-petition differently is a slap in the face of over 140,500 people who demanded that Babar be put on trial in the UK.”
“Now that it is clear that the call to put Babar on trial in the UK has not just cross-party backing but also enormous public support, we believe the correct forum for debate is the main chamber of the House of Commons, where the matter can be subjected to a vote.”
For further information or to arrange an interview, visit the Free Babar Ahmad website or the official Facebook page. You can also email email@example.com or telephone 07585355581.
Find out more about the next step in the Campaign, and how you can help by Putting Pressure on Parliament contacting your MP.