Cancer couple win battle to stay in the UK

Steven Cooke  and his partner Molly Jamare
Steven Cooke and his partner Molly Jamare
Police outside student accommodation in Stanhope Road, Portsmouth on Friday Picture Ben Fishwick

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THEY have fought for three years to be together as a couple.

And now finally, Molly Jamare, who fled her home country Zimbabwe due to violence and sexual assault, has been granted the right to stay in the UK.

And more importantly it also means she can be with her partner Steven Cooke, who is battling with terminal cancer.

Initially Mr Cooke was told that if he wanted to carry on his relationship with Ms Jamare, he would have to go to Zimbabwe with her.

The couple have spoken of their relief over the court ruling allowing Ms Jamare to stay.

The 44-year-old said: ‘A burden has been taken off our shoulders and I am so glad I can stay.

‘The court case was quite emotional when we spoke about Steven, but I’m so glad that’s done now and want to concentrate on being with Steven.’

As reported, Ms Jamare had been unable to work legally so volunteers at a Red Cross drop-in centre in Portsmouth and also looks after Steven, who has terminal prostate cancer.

Mr Cooke, 54, moved from London to Portsmouth, after he met Ms Jamare, in 2011, when she was given asylum rights to live in the UK.

The pair live together in Perkins House, Beck Street, Portsea.

In November 2011, the Home Office appealed against the court’s decision successfully and Ms Jamare was asked to leave.

The couple made an appeal under Article Eight of the Human Rights Act.

In January 2013, Mr Cooke was given the devastating news he had advanced prostate cancer, which was terminal and he would need palliative care.

This information was submitted to the Home Office but in October last year, the Home Office still refused.

However a second appeal against this decision has been upheld.

Mr Cooke, who is being treated at Queen Alexandra Hospital, said: ‘It’s absolutely fantastic news.

‘Molly is my world, she’s my rock and I’m so glad we can be together.’