Gants Hill widow’s grief for husband who died while being deported

THE HEARTBROKEN wife of a man who died on board a passenger plane while being deported says her five children “want justice for their dad”.With her 10-month-old daughter in her arms on Tuesday, Adrienne Mubenga fought back tears as she described her family’s pain.

Dad-of-five Jimmy Mubenga, 46, lost consciousness on a British Airways plane at Heathrow Airport in October as he was being deported to his native Angola.

His wife Adrienne, of Woodford Avenue, Gants Hill, said: “It’s painful. I can’t stop thinking about him.

“I miss him very, very much.”

Recalling the day of his funeral, held last month in Vine United Reformed Church, Riches Road, Ilford, the widow said: “The children asked me if they could come every day after school just to see daddy and be with him.”

She was at Gants Hill United Reformed Church, Woodford Avenue, Gants Hill, on Tuesday for a public meeting organised by Redbridge Equalities and Community Council.

Deborah Cole, co-director of campaign group INQUEST – which is helping Mr Mubenga’s family – spoke about the case and the work of the group.

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Those gathered, who heard the police were investigating the case and treating it as a potential murder, agreed to lobby borough MPs and London MEPs to take action on the issue.

Ms Mubenga, who has lived in the UK for more than 15 years, said: “He was a good man, a real family man.

“He went with the children to school and took them everywhere.

“He was a great father and always helped his family and his friends.”

She added: “It’s not fair for my husband to die just like that.

“He wasn’t sick or anything. I can’t stop crying.”

Tuesday’s meeting also heard that Ms Mubenga’s immigration status is being looked at by the Home Office.