'Too Fat' Chef Can Stay in New Zealand —for Now Albert Buitenhuis receives 23-month work visa By Ruth Brown, Newser Staff Posted Sep 9, 2013 4:52 PM CDT 9 comments Comments (Shutterstock) (Newser) – Good news for larger people with an affinity for the works of JRR Tolkien and Crowded House: Albert Buitenhuis, the South African chef facing deportation from New Zealand due to concerns that he was too overweight, has been given a visa. After a very public battle to stay in the country, Buitenhuis and his wife were finally granted 23-month work visas after the associate immigration minister stepped in to help them, reports Stuff.co.uk. Buitenhuis says the news is "bittersweet." "We are really starting from scratch again," he says. "We have lost thousands of dollars fighting this and we don't know where we will live because our home is gone. I am glad the fight is over but I am still afraid of what lies ahead." Buitenhuis has now lost 77 pounds since arriving in the country, and plans to shed another 55 pounds.