In KRA v Minister for Justice the applicants were a family of Nigerian citizens in respect of whom deportation orders were made by the Minister. They subsequently sought revocation of the deportation orders on the basis that the deportation of their child to Nigeria would violate the child’s right to education having regard to inadequate educational system in Nigeria. The Minister refused to revoke the deportation orders and the applicants subsequently instituted judicial review proceedings seeking to quash that refusal.
Humphreys J. dismissed the proceedings. It was held that while the right to education including to free primary education is a natural and imprescriptible right of the child to be enjoyed without discrimination on grounds such as nationality, legal status or marital status of parents by any child within the jurisdiction, this right only applies while the child is present in the State and does not confer any right not to be removed, even to a country with an inferior social or educational system.
Furthermore, Humphreys J. held that the right of a non-national child to be or remain in the State was not a natural and imprescriptible right and therefore did not fall within the scope of Article 42A.1 of the Constitution. Insofar as it related to social or educational rights (leaving aside family rights), Humphreys J. held that Article 42A did not represent an obstacle to deportation of a child and did not require express consideration by the Minister for Justice and Equality. In any event, Humphreys J. held that it was rationally open to the Minister to conclude that Nigeria has a functioning educational system. It was also held that there is no obligation on the Minister to consider the deportation of a child (or revocation of a deportation order) separately from that of a parent, disagreeing with the decision of Eagar J. in COO v Minister for Justice and Equality  IEHC 139. The decision in KRA is under appeal.
Challenge to refusal to revoke deportation order dismissed.