Perth great-grandmother, 93, wins last-minute reprieve after deportation threat

Mollie Manley with her four-year-old great granddaughter, Jasmine, in her aged care home last year. Source: Supplied

A 93-year-old great-grandmother who was given 28 days to leave the country - her home of 11 years - will not be immediately deported, after the family received a surprise phone call from the home affairs office.

The Australian government will not be deporting a great-grandmother who has lived in Australia for more than a decade and was given just 28 days to leave the country. 

Mollie Manley, from Somerset in England, has lived in Perth for 11 years alongside her three grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren - who are all Australian citizens.

Earlier this month, SBS News revealed the 93-year-old was facing a return to her home country, after failing Australia's permanent visa requirements on health grounds.

Her family feared the bed-ridden great-grandmother would not survive the plane journey alone, nor would she have had any family there to look after her. 

Mollie Manley, far left, and her family in Australia.
Mollie Manley, far left, and her family in Australia.

But Ms Manley's son-in-law Robert Rowe has received a phone call from the Department of Home Affairs saying she would not be deported back to the UK.

He said he was relieved but her future still remained uncertain. 

"It was like a great weight was lifted from my shoulders," he revealed to 9News.

"They assure me that the media has no influence on them, but I'll take that with a pinch of salt."

Ms Manley's family can now apply for a medical treatment visa - granting Ms Manley another twelve months in Australia - or appeal the decision. 

Her family had described the government's actions as reminiscent of a 'right-wing dictatorship', and have not told Ms Manley about her situation. 

Social media has erupted in cheer for the family since the news. 

"Thank goodness they let her stay," Angela Tarbottom-Thrower said. 

Sandra Marshall Gross said the ordeal just broke her heart. 

"How horrible it would be to have to go back and there's no one there for her," she said.

"Praying for her and her family that they let her stay, the family does not need the extra stress.

"They are having a tough enough time."

The Department of Home Affairs does not comment on individual cases, but a spokesperson told SBS News: "the Minister has personal intervention powers under the Migration Act 1958 that allow him to grant a visa to a person if the Minister thinks it is in the public interest to do so". 

Stay up to date with SBS NEWS

  • App
  • Subscribe
  • Follow
  • Listen
  • Watch