Twins who have been adopted by an Alberta couple could be one step closer to getting Canadian citizenship after the Ebola outbreak in Sierra Leone crippled their government's ability to process their travel documents.
Leo and Grace have been waiting in a Sierra Leone orphanage since they were adopted by Kayt and Stefan Mahon last February. The couple lives in Canmore, Alta., and has been waiting for the proper paperwork to come through to allow the twins to leave Sierra Leone.
The Mahons have been urgently appealing to the Canadian government to give the twins Canadian citizenship since the government in Sierra Leone is not able to handle the passport processing because of a lack of resources caused by the deadly Ebola outbreak.
Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) said in an email to CBC News on Thursday that Canadian consular officials in Accra, Ghana, are now working on the couple's request for citizenship for the twins and are awaiting a final round of documents from the couple.
"International adoptions through the citizenship process involve [two] stages — the first of which has been completed," the CIC statement read. "CIC is currently waiting for additional documents from the Mahons to continue processing Stage 2 of the adoption."
Immigration officials say they understand the couple's concerns and are ready to assist them with the second stage of the process if necessary.
The orphanage where the twins are currently staying is in lock down, which differs from quarantine in that its goal is keeping infected people out rather than banning infected people from leaving.
While Ebola kills about 90 per cent of those infected, it is not contagious until people experience symptoms.