Namibia: Supreme Court revokes surrogate child citizenship

Published: 22/Mar/2023
Source: New Era (Windhoek)

By Roland Routh

Five judges of the Supreme Court ruled on Monday that the Windhoek High Court was wrong when it ordered the Ministry of Home Affairs and Immigration to grant citizenship to the child of same-sex couple Phillip Lühl and partner Guillermo Delgado, who hails from Mexico.

The boy, who was born via surrogacy in South Africa, was initially denied entry into Namibia by home affairs but was later allowed, pending the outcome of the matter.

Windhoek High Court Judge Thomas Masuku on 13 October 2021 ordered that the ministry issues the minor with a Namibian citizenship certificate by descent within 30 days from the ruling.

The child is the firstborn son of Namibian citizens Lühl and Delgado.

The ministry, however, did not take it lying down and appealed the decision in the Supreme Court.

The appeal was heard by a full bench consisting of Chief Justice Peter Shivute, Deputy Chief Justice Petrus Damaseb, judges of appeal Sylvester Mainga and Dave Smuts, as well as Acting Judge of Appeal Theo Frank.

“After studying the said reasons, we have decided to appeal the ruling of the High Court, and an appeal was noted in the Supreme Court, setting out the reasons for our belief that the High Court erred in law and fact,” executive director Etienne Maritz said in a statement.

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Themes: Acquisition by children, Discrimination, Gender
Regions: Namibia
Year: 2023