Article 9 of the British Citizenship Bill to Withdraw Nationalities is Alarming

An article published in the Guardian newspaper tackled a legal problem in Article 9 of the British Citizenship and Borders Bill, which is that this bill would raise fear among Asians who hold British citizenship.

The author of the article, Naga Kandiah, a lawyer with MTC Solicitors in London, made a comparison between his status as a British citizen who was granted citizenship in 2015, 10 years after coming to the country from Sri Lanka, and the status of British-born student Shamima Begum who is a daughter of immigrant parents.

Begum was stripped of her citizenship after joining the Islamic State, using a controversial power introduced after the 2005 London bombings that allow the government to revoke dual citizenship if it “serves the public interest”. The writer added that the use of this authority increased in 2010 and more in 2014.

The writer emphasized this by saying that, like Begum, he could be stripped of his citizenship without prior notice by amending a proposed rule that was secretly added to the Citizenship and Borders Bill, by exploiting an article known as Article Nine, which would exempt the government from having to give notice if doing so is “impractical” or if the justification is in the interest of national security, diplomatic relations, or otherwise in the public interest.

We wonder here how does the government determines what is in the public interest? Could this include discontent with the current government, even if no crime was committed and the law was not violated?

We find that granting the power to revoke British citizenship has been harsh and controversial since it was introduced to the law in 2006, but the proposed supplement to these rules would disproportionately affect colored people.

The prior warning of the government’s intent to revoke citizenship gives at least time to prepare the defense and appeal, and failure to obtain such a “warning” would leave the victims of such decisions in a difficult situation, and we suppose that this is why the “no notice” clause was added to the legislation.

We affirm that Article 9 is controversial, and it means, from a legal point of view, that safety is no longer provided for those who have been naturalised and those born in the UK if this provision is turned into a law.

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