A man who successfully changed his name for a laugh has been denied a passport renewal because his surname is considered “offensive”.
Three years ago Kenny Kennard, 33, had his surname changed by deed poll to Fu-Kennard as a joke, but it appears the gag has now backfired.
It was no trouble being granted a drivers licence in his new name. But three years later, the UK’s Home Office has told the supermarket worker his surname was “offensive”, according to a Change.org petition.
“This decision needs to be over-turned as Kenny is now effectively a prisoner in his own country,” read the online petition.
He has reportedly tried to contest the decision, but all three attempts have all been unsuccessful.
Just a joke, Kennard says
"I'm finding it hard to believe the name could be construed as anything but funny and slightly ridiculous. It's just a joke,” he wrote on the petition.
“I agree with Home Office policy that not all names are acceptable, such as racial hate words or anything that invokes hatred but 'Fu-Kennard' is not offensive, and I object to them denying my chosen name," he added.
Mr Fu-Kennard, who served in the British military for eight years, said he enjoys travelling and he would like to see more of the world.
According to the Mirror, a letter from the Home Office stated Mr Fu-Kennard’s applications, sent in May, June and July this year, went against its policy.
The policy states that names including the use of swear words may cause public concern, even if they are only phonetic, rather than the way they are spelled.
The office advised it would also retain Kenny’s $A140 application fee.
He said he doesn’t want to change his name again, particularly on principal, claiming the government was “restricting my freedom”.
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