Portsmouth grandfather stranded in Dubai criticises Spinnaker Tower deal

Portsmouth grandfather Steve Grant is stranded in Dubai
Portsmouth grandfather Steve Grant is stranded in Dubai
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The Southsea grandfather trapped in Dubai has criticised Portsmouth City Council for allowing Emirates to sponsor the Spinnaker Tower.

Steve Grant, said: ‘This country is holding me here. How on Earth can the council allow its national airline to sponsor the Spinnaker Tower in my home city?

Emirates wanted to paint the Spinnaker Tower red. (Artist's impression)

Emirates wanted to paint the Spinnaker Tower red. (Artist's impression)

‘I just feel that it is a bit of a kick in the teeth that I am stuck here for what seems like a never-ending wait for decisions and their national airline are sponsoring the Spinnaker Tower which when I get back I will have to look at every day.

‘Perhaps Sir Tim Clark (the Emirates boss) with his obvious contacts over here and the so-called Minister of Portsmouth could help someone born and bred in Portsmouth.’

Mr Grant has been unable to leave Dubai since having his passport confiscated in mid-April as he sought to catch a connecting flight to Oman.

He was on his way to try to deliver a video message from his daughter Lacey Plato to her children Aishah, ten, and Faris, seven.

She has had no contact with them since November last year when her estranged partner Usama Al-Barwani was jailed for defying a High Court order to return the children to the UK.

He had illegally taken them to Oman in 2012 after visiting them at their Portsmouth home.

Mr Grant had hoped to reassure the children, who are with relatives of Mr Al-Barwani in Oman and who have apparently been told that their mother is dead.

But his journey ended abruptly when he was detained at Dubai airport and accused of making threats to kill Mr Al-Barwani’s father in an exchange of phone messages.

Mr Grant has since waited in vain for police to complete their investigation. He says he wants the British Embassy to do more to help him and his case has been taken up by his MP Flick Drummond (Portsmouth South).

*Click here for our petition calling on the Foreign and Commonwealth Office to do more to help Mr Grant.