UK Finance Boss Stranded in Nairobi Over Brexit Confusion

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    Angela Enzo, Vice President Keel Harbour Capital in the UK
    Angela Enzo
  • A British finance boss is stranded at a Nairobi hotel, after she was stopped from travelling back to her home in London, UK. Angela Enzo, Vice President Keel Harbour Capital, was set to fly back on Saturday, January 2. 

    Enzo had travelled to Kenya for a work trip using her Italian passport and was left stranded in Nairobi after British Airways officials based at JKIA declared her ID documents invalid. 

    She complained that the officials argued that she did not have the right papers to fly to the UK in what appears to be a post-Brexit confusion. 

    The 31-year-old hedge fund and private equity advisor had been cleared at the immigration office at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) only to be stopped from boarding the plane. 

    Angela Enzo, Vice President Keel Harbour Capital in the UK
    Angela Enzo

    "I am stranded in a Nairobi hotel. It’s pretty crazy. It was ridiculous and unlawful. I was checked-in and about to board the plane. I can’t make sense of what is going on.

    “Four British Airways officials told me I had no right to fly to the UK, and to my home. They were talking about Europeans not being welcome because of Brexit. I couldn’t believe my ears. My life is in London," Enzo said, speaking to the Sun newspaper.  

    Enzo added that British Airways staff and airport officials from the British High Commission seemed to blame each other and called for clarity on post-Brexit laws. 

    British officials admitted making an error by preventing her from travelling to Heathrow airport, adding that, "We provide guidance to airlines and we will strive to ensure smooth travel now that we have taken back control of our borders." 

    The UK voted to leave the EU in 2016 and officially left the trading bloc on January 31, 2020.

    UK's Home Office unveiled the EU Settlement Scheme, to secure the rights of EU citizens living in the UK post-Brexit. EU citizens can still travel to the UK without a visa, provided they show a valid passport or national ID card.

    The grace period ends in June 2021 as they would be required to have registered with the scheme. 

    However, both sides agreed to maintain several regulations until December 31 2020, to allow enough time for negotiations of a new trade deal.

    Many countries have entered into separate deals with the UK to ease trade and relations. Kenya signed a trade agreement with Britain on Tuesday, December 8, 2020. 

    Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA), Nairobi