Trump: Soyinka will not face charges if he destroys his green card — U.S. Immigration Lawyers

Wole Soyinka
Photo: dailytimes.com.ng
Wole Soyinka Photo: dailytimes.com.ng

The United States government will not bring any civil or criminal charges against Nobel laureate, Wole Soyinka, if he eventually destroys his American green card as openly threatened, U.S. immigration experts told PREMIUM TIMES.

In fact, Mr. Soyinka will still be able to visit the United States at any time he desires even after destroying his green card before the public glare, the lawyers said.

Immigration attorneys, Isaac Falusi and Samuel Adewusi, said in separate interviews with PREMIUM TIMES that the controversies surrounding the decision of the professor are inconsequential in the U.S.

Mr. Falusi, an expert in immigration and international trade law, said Mr. Soyinka would have merely exercised his free speech by destroying his green card.

“Destroying a green card is an expression of free speech which no one will ever be penalised for in America,” Mr. Falusi said. “Being a resident in America is a voluntary thing.”

“The government gave him the green card because he was qualified when he applied for it,” Mr. Falusi said.

The lawyer said the U.S. Homeland Security, which handles such documents, may not even be aware of the controversy and even if it were, it still won’t mean an action will be taken.

“If he has made a public show of destroying his card, that doesn’t mean the Homeland Security is aware of it,” Mr. Falusi said. “ But even if they were, he will still be able to easily obtain another green card because his name is still on the computer as a valid American resident.”

There have been reports that Mr. Soyinka faces a jail term should he destroy his green card.

The professor first stated a fortnight ago that he would destroy his green card if Donald Trump was elected president.

“The moment they announce his [Trump’s] victory, I will cut my green card myself and start packing up,” Mr. Soyinka told a gathering at Oxford University in what appeared like a casual observation about the tone of the American campaign at the time.

Mr. Trump won the election on June 8, prompting immediate demand and mockery from Nigerians.

He hit back at critics in a 4,000-word essay on Saturday, describing them as noisome creatures and nattering nitwits. He, however, reassured that he will still go ahead to ahead as planned, but only on his own terms.

But if he really wants to cut his access to the U.S., then he will need to do more than shred his residency card, Mr. Adewusi said.

Mr. Adewusi, Chairman of the Board of Trustee of the Nigerians in Diaspora Organisation in the Americas, further stated that “in order to destroy your green card you have to go to a consulate near you, especially if you’re outside the United States.”

“At the consulate, you must request for and fill a document called Form I-407. It is a long process but only after you complete before you could boldly say that you have destroyed your access to enter America.”

Mr. Adewusi echoed Mr. Falusi’s position that Mr. Soyinka’s action is strictly an exercise of his free speech.

“It’s more of a free speech the same way people burn flags and their passports. No one will penalise him for anything,” Mr. Adewusi said.


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  • Watch man

    I wonder why the guy is making noise about destroying the green card he applied for, after all he did not inform the public when he got it. The earlier you take “a deep breadth” and get over your hatred for Trump the better for you. The truth is that the people of US have constitutionally elected their president and that person is Donald J. Trump, and there is nothing you can do about it. Face the issues and challenges in Nigeria (eg. cultism) and stop whining over what another sovereign nation did to better their lot.

    • Taiwo

      He was speaking to a group of students in Oxford. Did he arrange a press a press conference?

  • TalkWella

    If he has made a public show of destroying his card, that doesn’t mean the Homeland Security is aware of it,” Mr. Falusi said. “ But even if they were, he will still be able to easily obtain another green card because his name is still on the computer as a valid American resident.”

    So need prof keep your green card becos even if you destroy it you will still get another one.

    Now we know better!

  • Taiwo

    Kayode Ajulo, one Nigerian lawyer said he would be jailed for 3 years. I guess he just wanted us to know that he is a lawyer.

    • emmanuel

      Your people are confused and that was why they sang Buhari into office and were compensated with a toilet tissue paper value Vice President and Deputy House Speaker. At least we dey hear Ekweremadu name pass the two of them.

  • Lawpeople

    @disqus_BqBMPFx34K:disqus

    “Malicious damage”
    is a crime under U.S federal law and malicious damage does not come
    within the protection of free speech anymore than libel can be protected as
    free speech under U.S laws.

  • emmanuel

    I beg make una waka pass hungry Yorobber Lawyers. Soyinka only tried to play a popularity game such that he would be relevant if Clinton entered as President, unfortunately the scam fell through.
    Same thing Joshua did.
    The Yorobbers like easy money and virtue and would rather do elitist scam than work very hard. Last weekend, Matthew Ashimolowo gathered Nigerians who are in the valley of pains caused by Buhari and Kemi together at KICC. For Kemi to tell them how to make money. After telling them what they know already, he collected what they called seed offering in the from $1,000.00 and below from each person as their price for voting Buhari into office and refusing to use their brains.
    Is there a Nigerian living today that does not know the business to do when there is money? so why impoverish them again by collecting the little they have?
    Obasanjo also wrote to Trump the next day, promising what Africa would do with his Government. I beg make una tell me; in which capacity? A s A Yorobber Chief or a Yoruba man?

  • Omooba Adekunle Orafidiya

    Soyinka is an oaf who shouldn’t be taken seriously. The media should stop inflicting the sod on us. He is at liberty to do whatever he wants with a Green Card he shouldn’t be holding in the first instance. To hell with Wole Soyinka and his attention-seeking antics.

  • princegab

    I think friends and fiends alike would only want to see dramas around the dramatist. So many of us swore, cursed and boasted, even prophesied in favour of Clinton’s victory. As it turned out, we were all correct, Clinton won the popular vote, except she never became the president elect. We all won, prof WS included.