Hatfield student’s desperate plea to help mum detained in China

PUBLISHED: 17:00 23 August 2013

L-R: Mary Modupe Idowu and her daughters Julie Idowu, Sarah Murray and Elizabeth Idowu

L-R: Mary Modupe Idowu and her daughters Julie Idowu, Sarah Murray and Elizabeth Idowu


A STUDENT from Hatfield is desperately trying to get her mother home from China after she was detained by the authorities.

Mary Idowu, 59, was travelling with a friend in south east China when they were arrested on June 21. They have not been allowed to leave the country since.

Laura Idowu, 20, of Cunningham Avenue, is now trying to get the British Government to take action.

The 20-year-old, speaking to the WHT from China, said: “I am tired of this situation and I just want to go home.

“My mother and her friend both have pre-existing medical conditions and I’m afraid for their lives.

“I used to think our Government was strong, but now I’m not too sure.

“Or maybe they are strong and just choosing not to help us.”

Miss Idowu, a student at the University of Hertfordshire, claimed her mother and friend, Esther Jubril-Badmos, were arrested after a dispute in a shop when they tried to return an item.

The shop owner allegedly started attacking Mrs Jubril-Badmos and when Mrs Idowu ran for help, they were set upon by more people.

When they were taken to the police station, they were accused of attacking five people.

The pair were detained by police for 39 days – the maximum without being charged – before being told they were free to go home.

But Miss Idowu said she and her sister had to first pay authorities £5,000.

When they got to the airport, officials said the pair were still on bail and could not leave the country.

A spokeswoman from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office said: “We are aware of the arrest of a British national, Mary Idowu, in Ghuangzhou, China, on June 21. We are providing consular assistance.”

Miss Idowu, whose Chinese visa expires on Monday, said: “Right now it feels like it’s never going to end, but I still have faith in my Government that they will bring us home immediately.

“I hope they don’t prove me wrong.”

A petition has been set up by Miss Idowu and her family to try and force the government to act.

To sign the petition visit http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/53909

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