James O'Brien 10am - 1pm
Home Office Minister Doesn't Know Police Numbers... During Announcement On Police
9 April 2018, 10:06 | Updated: 9 April 2018, 10:26
A Home Office Minister hesitantly recalled an estimated number of police officers in London, but didn't know how many officers there were in the UK.
Victoria Atkins was speaking to Nick Ferrari about the Home Secretary's new Serious Violence Strategy when she stumbled on police numbers.
The Government had faced increasing pressure to take action after a recent spike in fatal stabbings in London, which saw over 300 additional police officers deployed over the weekend.
"You'll be aware of how many police officers we have in the country, won't you?" Nick asked.
She hesitantly recalled how many police officers are in London, but wanted the national number.
"But the whole of the country. You'll be aware of the figure, won't you Minister?" he said.
"You're testing me, Nick" she exclaimed.
"I'm not going to hazard a guess, I'm just going to front up and say I'm so sorry. That number's slipped my mind," she said.
Nick said: "You are a Home Office Minister, Minister."
"Wouldn't it be a good idea to have the figures?"
Ms Atkins said: "It would be."
It's not the first time a politician has come unstuck with Nick Ferrari on police numbers. Diane Abbott's interview last year became infamous after she got confused over Labour's policing policy.