UK Home Secretary Resigns Over Immigration Targets Controversy
UK Home Secretary Amber Rudd said that she "inadvertently misled" the members of parliament over immigration targets.
UK Home Secretary Amber Rudd resigned from her post on April 29, saying that she “inadvertently misled” the members of parliament over targets for removal of undocumented immigrants.
Rudd made a telephone call to Prime Minister Theresa May, informing her of her decision, amid increasing pressure from the opposition to quit, BBC reported. “I feel it is necessary to do so because I inadvertently misled the Home Affairs Select Committee,” Rudd said as she admitted that she ought to have been aware of the fact that the targets existed, according to Mail Online.
Rudd in her resignation letter said that she quit from her post after reviewing the suggestions given to her by Home Office officials, and she accepted that she should have had full knowledge of the fact that the Home Office did have targets to remove illegal immigrants from the country, according to the Guardian.
Rudd was asked on April 26 to be present in front of MPs in the UK House of Commons so she could answer an urgent question from Labour’s shadow home secretary Diane Abbott. This was after Home Office documents showed that targets had been stipulated for voluntary removals of undocumented immigrants.
Rudd admitted that there were “local targets” for “internal performance management” but said she had not known about them, BBC reported. On April 25, however, she had said that there were no targets.
May noted that she was “very sorry” to see Rudd leave the post and that she should “take great pride” in her achievements. Rudd was also under pressure to resign over the Windrush scandal that United Kingdom was embroiled in recently. “I know that you have a great contribution still to make to national life, and look forward to seeing you do so,” May wrote, as per the Guardian.
Many of Rudd’s colleagues, including Micheal Gove, the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, expressed sadness on the social media.
I’m so sad about Amber’s departure from government – she was a huge asset – brave, principled, thoughtful, humane, considerate and always thinking of the impact of policy on the vulnerable – I hope Amber will be back soon – we need her
— Michael Gove (@michaelgove) April 29, 2018
Boris Johnson, the Secretary of State for Foreign & Commonwealth Affairs, also took to the social media in Rudd’s support saying, “Really sad to lose Amber Rudd from Cabinet. A fine colleague who did a great job during last year’s terrorist attacks and cares deeply about the people she serves.”
Many others like Labour deputy leader Tom Watson criticized Rudd. “I see Amber Rudd is carrying the can for the person originally responsible for this scandal – Theresa May,” Watson said on the social media.
Rudd had told May in a letter in January 2017 that she would give immigration officials more “teeth” to deport illegal immigrants in the country to accelerate their deportation program, the Guardian had reported earlier.