Brexit icon and former Reform UK leader Nigel Farage has slammed the Home Secretary Priti Patel over her failure to deport illegal boat migrants who fail to qualify for refugee status in the UK, describing the government’s failure to return migrants as “the biggest single pull factor” encouraging more to come.
His comments came in the course of a GB News discussion with Migration Watch boss Alp Mehmet, who also highlighted the eye-watering cost to the taxpayer of Britain’s broken immigration system.
“Now, over 14,000 people so far have come into the UK and they’re being housed all over the country, and not one single person – not one single person – has been deported this year. And I think, from my studies of this, that’s the biggest single pull factor” said the populist legend.
“It’s the biggest incentive to pay large money to the people traffickers. It’s the absolute certitude that whoever you are, wherever you’ve come from, whatever your background, that once you get into Dover docks you will not be removed.”
Farage went on to discuss previous rates of deportation that were significantly higher than they are today – even before migrant started pouring across the English Channel in ever growing numbers.
“Now if we go back even ten years, we were actually deporting significant numbers of people who’d illegally come to Britain and would not qualify for refugee stats.
“10 to 15 thousand people a year were being deported, going back a decade, and now with the cross-Channel boats it’s zero. Surely that is something that Priti Patel really could address.”
Mr Mehmet appeared to agree with Farage’s assessment, saying: “The fact is that people who are coming here in order to stay, and are not genuine refugees – in my view – should be held, a decision quickly made, and then returned either from whence they came or back to their countries of origin. Until we do that, I’m afraid they will continue coming and we’ll be having this conversation this time next year and talking about even larger numbers coming across from the other side of the Channel.”