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Swedish MP takes sales engineer's work permit rejection to parliament

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Swedish MP takes sales engineer's work permit rejection to parliament
Mats Persson plans to submit a formal parliamentary question on Thursday. Photo: Jonas Ekströmer/TT
16:01 CEST+02:00
The case of Iranian sales engineer Ali Omumi is to be taken to the Swedish Parliament, two days after The Local reported that he faces deportation for a former employer's error.
Mats Persson, an MP for the Liberal Party, plans to submit a formal parliamentary question to immigration minister Heléne Fritzon this Thursday, asking why Omumi and others like him continue to be expelled from Sweden as a result of minor administrative mistakes. 
 
"It really makes me upset that we are throwing people out who are working and contributing to our country," Persson told The Local. "When it's obvious that people wanted to act correctly, they shouldn't be punished."
 
The 38-year-old Omumi, who works for the engineering giant ABB, was on April 27th ordered to leave Sweden within four weeks because a previous employer had made an error over his health insurance. 
 
 
Persson said Omumi's case, which he learned about from Tuesday's report in The Local, demonstrated starkly how wrong the Swedish government had been to stop work on a long-awaited new work permit law this March.  
 
Fritzon justified the decision by saying that the judgement handed down by the Migration Court of Appeal in the so-called 'pizza baker case' in December meant that the new law was no longer necessary. 
 
"If we have a positive development as a result of the new precedent, we shouldn't have a new law which limits it," she told Dagens Nyheter. The proposal, which suggested deported workers should be able to seek compensation from their employer, had been criticized by Swedish business organizations.
 
Fritzon's office referred back to the article in Dagens Nyheter when approached by The Local for a comment on Wednesday.
 
 
According to Persson, Omumi's case shows the complacency of the government.
 
"It's obvious that they are wrong, because if they were right, these kinds of decisions wouldn't happen," he said. "It's obvious that the legislation needs to be changed, and I find it really difficult to understand why they didn't do it." 
 
After Persson's question is submitted, Fritzon will then have two weeks to publish a written answer explaining why a new work permit law is not necessary, despite the fact that highly skilled foreign workers continue to be expelled for errors committed by their employers
 
In its judgement in December, the Court required migration officials to take an "overall assessment" in work permit cases, and not to refuse work permits because of minor bureaucratic errors. 
 
 
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