Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan has said he will give full consideration to the application from the Muojeke family against their deportation order on humanitarian grounds once court proceedings were over.

The matter was raised in the Dáil by Fianna Fáil TD Barry Cowen and PBP TD Richard Boyd Barrett.

The Nigerian family, who are living in Tullamore, met the minister to appeal for clemency over a deportation order that has been issued against them.

Supporters of the family met politicians outside Leinster House today to deliver a petition signed by more than 22,000 people.

Nonso, 14, and 19-year-old Victor arrived in Ireland 11 years ago from Nigeria with their widowed mother.

The family applied for asylum, but their application was turned down and a deportation order was issued.

A petition with over 22,000 signatures being handed in at Leinster House

Last week, the High Court rejected a final appeal by the family. A central ground for rejection was that the mother had evaded deportation for eight years.

Students and teachers at Tullamore College have spearheaded a campaign for clemency for the two boys.

They argue that they have grown up here and should be allowed to stay.

A High Court stay on the deportation order expires at midnight tomorrow. 

Minister Flanagan said the matter was sub judice, but he added: "When this case has concluded in the courts, I will give the application full consideration on humanitarian grounds."

Mr Flanagan said there had been misinformation about the case and also said that Nonso was not in any danger of deportation.