Nick Ferrari Gets Tough On Cabinet Minister Over Go Home Vans
17 April 2018, 11:14 | Updated: 17 April 2018, 12:54
The government has issued an apology after it emerged that some people who arrived from Commonwealth countries as children are now incorrectly identified as illegal immigrants. Nick Ferrari gave the Cabinet Office Minister David Lidington a hard time over his party's tough stance on immigration.
Home Secretary Amber Rudd has apologised for the "appalling" way in which some of the Windrush generation have been treated, saying that the Home Office had "lost sight of individuals" and become "too concerned with policy".
She announced a new unit to help people establish their right to remain in the UK, and that fees for new documentation will be waived as many of the Windrush generation who arrived on their parents' documentation have never formally applied for British citizenship or a passport.
Cases have emerged of people who have lost their jobs, as well as health and benefits despite paying tax and National Insurance contributions for decades.
Nick Ferrari put the issue to the Cabinet Office Minister, asking: "What the hell's gone wrong?"
David Lidington struggled to say that there was a mishandling of the case before outlining the government's plan to put things right.
He told Nick Ferrari that "something went badly wrong" but it was right that the UK takes a "tough line" against anybody who overstay visas, commit serious crimes, or come illegally.
“We’ve got no evidence of anybody having been deported," he said.
“Clearly if we were to find that there have been cases of that kind then we’d want to put that injustice right.
“But at the moment we’ve had no evidence of those cases brought to the government’s attention.”
But Nick reminded him of the 'Go Home' vans the Home Office commissioned in 2013.
"I'll remind you of the text: 'In the UK illegally? Go home or face arrest.'
"There's nothing about overstaying your visa there, you could be referring to Windrush," he said.
"No, because the people that we're talking about have a right given by an act of Parliament" Mr Lidington replied.
"But you can agree it was a mistake, Mr Lidington?"
"What happened five years ago, happened five years ago."