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The man with a plan

By teamkrejados (blog.chinadaily.com.cn) Updated: 2015-09-08 17:18

His forged passport expired. The school he worked at knew his document was up for renewal and offered an escort to the South African consulate in Beijing. The Man with the Plan turned the offer down, saying he was too busy to go and would simply send it by certified carrier. What he actually must have done was contact a forger. In a few weeks, he produced a new, authentic looking document.

It all came to a head on Valentine's Day this year. He had taken his fiancée to Hong Kong to shop for wedding rings. Coming back through the checkpoint in Shenzhen, his fraudulent documents were discovered and he was immediately taken to jail.

All of his assets were seized: car, house, business. Bank accounts were frozen. He remained incarcerated while the police turned over every aspect of his life. Soon the banks were calling the school where he worked, looking for their credit card payment. I cannot tell you what was happening at the school he founded, but this much is true: people who had associated with him couldn't believe they had engaged with a criminal.

For four months this man sat in jail. Disowned by any institution that had ever hired him and most likely by any other associates, he had all that time to contemplate how everything he had worked so hard for was now all for naught. Surely he would be deported with nothing but the clothes on his back.

That is exactly what happened. China's police were thorough in their investigation. Since coming to China, all evidence pointed to a hard working man, giving to the community and fulfilling any obligation he took on. They dug further. The Nigerian police rendered their report: nothing to report. His only crime is that he entered this country with fake credentials.

There are many questions in the wake of this scandal. Why did he forge a South African passport when, surely by birthright he would be entitled to one? "Too much stress" was his reply. Why a South African passport, not Nigerian? "South Africans are welcome in China."

Ten years have passed since his entry into China. He's no longer a young man, and he's back to square one in getting started with life. What will he do? No answer to that. But there are many answers to other aspects of this man's presence and attitude. Now we understand his vagueness, his standoffishness, and his refusal to partake in any social events.

This is a true story; one that leaves me scratching my head. Here we have a man who has never asked for a handout. Who, by all accounts has worked hard to improve his station in life – something society universally dictates should be every person's imperative. He was a contributing member of society and to the economy. His only crime is that he did so with fake credentials.

Now, this hard working man is being deported to a country where his educational and economic chances are few, where he will have little to no opportunity to contribute to society, where he might become a victim of sectarian violence, where he might again be forced to seek refuge in another country – legally or illegally. Considering the drain on resources the European is enduring because of all the refugees needing asylum, doesn't it seem illogical that such a person – who is willing to work and otherwise law-abiding, would be denied the chance to continue his efforts?

The good news is that China bears him no ill will. Before putting him on a plane, the officer in charge of his investigation told him he was welcome back, provided he had proper credentials. Please join me in the hope that our Man with a Plan can get them, and continue to help improve this world, one student at a time.

The original blog is at: http://blog.chinadaily.com.cn/blog-1372409-31395.html

 

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