*most inevitable narrator’s voice of all time*
There were targets for removals pic.twitter.com/8r0Lccg8Xo
— Alan White (@aljwhite) April 26, 2018
Amber Rudd told the Home Affairs select committee yesterday: “We don’t have targets for removals… if you’re asking me are there numbers of people we expect to be removed, that’s not how we operate.”
Note the subtle change in line from the Home Office last night: It has never been policy to take decisions arbitrarily to meet a target.
… Repeated by Matt Hancock on the Today programme this morning: “As far as I understand it, it has never been Home Office policy to take decisions arbitrarily to meet the target.”
Because… this 2015 report sent to then Home Secretary Theresa May by the Chief Inspector of Borders and Immigration shows: “For 2014/15 (10 full months) the Home Office set a target of 7,200 Voluntary Departures, an average of 120 per week, with the weekly target rising to 160 by the end of March 2015. For 2015/16, the annual target was raised to 12,000.”
You would have thought that, between them, the current and former Home Secretaries would know if the Home Office had migrant removal targets. Guess who is scheduled for today’s Press Gallery lunch…