“We have lost control of our borders,” the Home Secretary said today as she blamed the Channel migration crisis on economic migrants “who take advantage of the generosity of the British people”.
Soella Braverman said she did not want to “point the finger of blame” at a particular Home Secretary for overcrowding at Manston, the processing center in Kent, and instead criticized people crossing the Channel in small boats.
“I’m not going to blame anyone, it’s not that simple,” she told the House of Commons Home Affairs Committee. And when asked again, she said, “Listen, I don’t think pointing fingers is helpful.”
After urging, she replied, “I’ll tell you who’s to blame, it’s very clear who’s to blame, it’s the people who break our rules, come here illegally, exploit vulnerable people and try to exploit the generosity of the British people who exploit – that’s who is to blame.”
It added that “people smugglers” and “people who choose illegal and dangerous travel to come here for economic reasons” are the perpetrators.
Conservative MP Lee Anderson told her: “We are putting more (asylum seekers) in hotels because our borders have not been checked by the Home Office and they are not appropriate at the moment.”
She replied: We failed to control our borders, yes. That is why the Prime Minister and I are determined to solve this problem.”
Ms Braverman also revealed that each employee decides on average one asylum application per week. Nearly 130,000 people are currently awaiting a decision.
Soella Braverman said she did not want to blame anyone for overcrowding at Manston, the processing center in Kent, and instead criticized people crossing the Channel in small boats.
Previous figures showed more than 12,000 Albanians arrived in the UK on small boats this year, 10,000 of whom were described as “adult males”.
The Iraqi who died in Manston last week has not yet been identified
Deputies heard that the death of a man who was being held at the Manston Immigrant Processing Center was not in question, and that he had received a “significant level of medical assistance” at the scene.
Secret Channel threat leader Dan O’Mahony told the House of Commons Home Affairs Committee: “The individual concerned had access to a significant level of medical support while in Manston, and the circumstances of what happened are not in any way suspicious and therefore there is no ongoing police investigation.
“Of course we think a lot about the people he was with. As far as I know, we haven’t been able to contact his relatives yet. So there is a tragic set of circumstances that we continue to treat very carefully.
Mr Mahoney confirmed that the man had been in Manston for seven days after arriving in the UK on November 12 before he died in hospital in the early hours of November 19.
But today it appears that only 36 Albanians who arrived in small boats and have been held at Manston over the past few weeks have returned home.
The town of Manston in north Kent is due to receive 1,600 people for a statutory 24-hour period, but earlier this month the figure was around 4,000 as officials struggled to deal with the record number of arrivals.
This led to a series of lawsuits against the Home Office.
Today, Ms. Braverman’s chief official confirmed that she had received legal advice about a possible violation of the law, but in a candid exchange with MPs, the secretary declined to say what that advice was and when she received it.
She said she had been “aware since the beginning of my term that there was a problem in Manston”, but cited “a government agreement” that legal advice should not be discussed.
Home Secretary Matthew Rycroft said: “Home Office officials have brought the Home Secretary’s legal status and policy options to the attention of the Home Secretary since the start of her term.”
The couple was also upset not to know how many judicial reviews had been launched against Manston.
The chair of the House of Commons Home Affairs Committee, Dame Diana Johnson, said she had heard there were four.
Mr. Rycroft said: “We are aware that there are judicial reviews on Manston, and as you would expect, we are dealing with them in a comprehensive manner. I personally did not know there were four.”
Lady Diana replied, “I am quite astonished that you did not think I could ask that question.”
Ms Braverman later revealed that the Home Office had received notice of five possible judicial reviews.
The migrants are brought ashore at Dungeness Beach after being picked up by the RNLI crew
Manston is one of the main processing centers where immigrants are held until more suitable accommodation can be found
Manston is now empty after everyone there has moved to hotels or lodgings.
Dan O’Mahony, the clandestine sewage threat leader, told MPs today that the backlash from MPs and local councils was partly responsible for past delays in getting migrants out of the center and into hotels.
Difficult asylum cases “handled by inexperienced staff”
Insiders claim the UK’s asylum system is being undermined by the inexperienced and underpaid staff hired to process applications.
According to the latest figures released in June 2023, nearly 130,000 people are awaiting a decision on their asylum application.
Informed sources said that deploying new junior staff to deal with complex cases delays decisions and forces officers to pay for long and expensive hotel stays.
A Home Office official with several years’ experience told Newsnight: “They employ a large number of inexperienced staff who need training and that takes time, so the backlog is increasing.
“And it’s the young workers who have these horrible stories and they get paid so low – what’s the incentive to stay? There’s no one… So they leave and then they hire someone else and it goes on like this.
The Home Office said it had “increased the number of asylum officers by 80% to more than 1,000,” adding that “a successful pilot program to increase the number of applications processed is now being rolled out across the country.”
MPs also asked Ms Braverman and her colleagues about the stalled deal to send migrants to Rwanda, for which Britain has already paid the country £140m.
Today, Cabinet Secretary Matthew Rycroft admitted he was still not sure the policy was worth the money.
It has been more than seven months since former Home Secretary Priti Patel announced an agreement to limit canal crossings, but the plan has been hampered by legal challenges.
Asked if he thought the policy represented value for money, Mr Rycroft told the House of Commons Home Affairs Committee on Wednesday: “I am constantly reviewing this provision as you would expect and circumstances have not changed enough for me to change my mind, from April, that we have not had Proof that it is worth the money.
“The UK has paid £120m plus a further £20m for set-up costs to the Government of Rwanda and it is still the case that they cannot and cannot offer value for money.
I think it’s worth emphasizing that the purpose of the system is deterrence and prevention. The program’s success will not be measured by the number of thousands resettled in Rwanda, but by the number of people who fail the dangerous crossing of the English Channel.
On April 14, Ms Patel signed what she described as a “world’s first” agreement with Rwanda to take in migrants the UK considers “illegal” and therefore not permitted under the new immigration rules.
But the first deportation flight, which was scheduled to take off on June 14, was halted due to legal challenges.
The legality of the policy has since been challenged in court, and ministers and activists are awaiting a decision by Supreme Court judges on the case.
According to preliminary figures from the Ministry of Defence, 36,858 people have arrived in Great Britain after crossing the English Channel since the agreement was announced.
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-11461203/Suella-Braverman-blames-migrants-abuse-generosity-British-people-crisis.html?ns_mchannel=rss&ns_campaign=1490&ito=1490 Suella Braverman blames the crisis on Migrants who ‘abuse Britons’ generosity’