The UK Home Office has refused to grant a visa for a Zimbabwean church leader who has been persecuted by the Mugabe regime. Gift Konjana has been arrested 34 times, had his house petrol bombed, faced death many times and rescued people from torture camps on his own in the dead of night. He has been invited to speak at a major event in London – but was unable to do so as his visa was refused.
It comes at the same time as another Zimbabwean pastor, Evan Mawarire, who is leading protests against the dictatorship of Robert Mugabe, had his visa refused just hours before he was due to board a flight to the UK.
The contrast between these men and some of those currently being granted visas by the UK government is stark. As we have recently reported, this summer the UK government granted visas for a tour of UK mosques by two Pakistani Islamic leaders who have been prominent campaigners to “honour” the murder of anyone opposed to Pakistan’s blasphemy laws. At the same time the UK Home Office has issued guidance stating that senior members of Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood should be granted asylum in the UK – despite the fact that the Muslim Brotherhood has repeatedly incited violence against Egyptian Christians leading to around 80 churches being burnt down since 2013.