A group of people gathered in downtown Regina on Monday to support two Nigerian students who have been living in sanctuary for more than a year.

About 40 supporters marched through Regina's downtown, chanting in support of Victoria Ordu and Favour Amadi.

The two former University of Regina students say they accidentally violated the terms of their student visas. They both received deportation orders more than a year ago.

Michelle Stewart, a justice professor at the University of Regina, organized the rally.

"The thing that's encouraging for us is having the cabinet shuffle right now, and having somebody come in with a really strong history in diplomacy," Stewart said. "We're hoping he can find a common sense solution."

Ordu and Amadi's supporters are now reaching out to Canada's new immigration minister, Chris Alexander.

Ralph Goodale, Liberal MP for Wascana, said he's spoken to the new minister.

"[Alexander] is coming at it with a positive frame of mind and showing some flexibility," Goodale said. "He doesn't want to set a bad precedent from the point of view of the immigration rules of the country and I understand that. He wants to find a practical result for these two young women."

Gordon Wyant, Saskatchewan's minster of justice, said he has written to Alexander asking him to reconsider a deportation order.