In Parliament, we have had another week of Tory infighting over the farcical and failing Rwanda scheme. We have a government in total chaos, with more weak leadership from Rishi Sunak.
The Tories are fighting with each other over a failing scheme and they are letting the country down. Time and again they have gone for gimmicks rather than ever getting a grip.
Ministers have already sent £290 million to Rwanda with nearly £400 million promised, and have promised Rwanda extra payments for every individual asylum seeker sent, but they have refused to say how much that will cost the British taxpayer.
More Home Secretaries than asylum seekers have been sent to Rwanda – and even if they do get it off the ground it will only cover less than 1% of people arriving in the country.
The Tories are fighting with each other over a failing scheme and they are letting the country down. Time and again they have gone for gimmicks rather than ever getting a grip. We need to stop dangerous small boat crossings and crackdown on the criminal smuggler gangs who are exploiting vulnerable people, but this is not a serious plan.
On 15 November 2023, the UK Supreme Court found that the Rwanda arrangements were unlawful. In a unanimous decision, the court held that in essence Rwanda was not a safe country because of the risk that it would not decide asylum claims properly and send refugees back to places where they would be persecuted.
This scheme raises substantial ethical and moral questions, around the safety or appropriateness of relocating asylum seekers to Rwanda. This is on top of the fact that the scheme comes at a huge cost with little evidence that it will prevent further people risking their lives to make these crossings.
I oppose this legislation and will be voting against it again tonight.