A doctor from Singapore who risks being thrown out the country despite the support from from MPs, immigration judges and members of the public says the support has been ‘heartening’ – after 50,000 petition signed a petition demanding he is allowed to stay.

Speaking to the Manchester Evening News Luke Ong, who came to the UK 10 years ago to train and is set to qualify in just a few months time said “It’s been very encouraging and heartening to see how much support I’ve got.”

Dr Ong, 31, was denied permanent residency last year as his application was 18 days late and appealed.

Despite an immigration judge ruling it ‘would not be proportionate’ to remove him Home Office officials have applied to have the decision overturned.

The future GP has the backing from the Manchester Mayor and also his local MP Lucy Powell who is understood to be raising the issue in parliament.

Dr Chaand Nagpaul, chairman of the BMA said Dr Ong’s case ‘beggars belief’, at a time when the NHS is planning to spend £100m bringing in 3,000 GPs from abroad to cover staff shortages.

A spokesman from the Home Office said: “All visa applications are considered in line with immigration rules and on the evidence provided.

“Mr Ong’s case is currently under appeal and it would be inappropriate to comment further whilst legal proceedings are ongoing.”

Sign the petition here

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