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by Ruaraidh Gilmour
01 November 2022
Suella Braverman tells MPs she is not to blame for Manston Crisis

Suella Braverman leaving Downing Street

Suella Braverman tells MPs she is not to blame for Manston Crisis

Suella Braverman insisted that she was not to blame for the dire situation at the Manston refugee centre in Kent, while she intensified her rhetoric on immigration.    

The newly reappointed home secretary told members in the House of Commons last night that she “never blocked” the use of hotels to ease pressure on the immigration processing centre and “never ignored legal advice” on the matter, although she did say she has been critical of the use of them.  

This comes after David Neal, chief inspector of borders and immigration, described the conditions at the centre as “wretched” last week. It is currently housing 4,000 migrants, more than double its capacity.   

Braverman denied that she may have broken the ministerial code again by ignoring legal advice recommending that she move asylum seekers from Manston to hotels.  

According to the local MP, Sir Roger Gale, the “facility operated absolutely magnificently and very efficiently until five weeks ago, when I’m afraid the home secretary took the policy decision not to commission further accommodation, and it is that that has led to the crisis at Manston,” he said.  

Shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper told Braverman in the House of Commons that her failure to act on legal advice had led to dangerous overcrowding and outbreaks of disease, including diphtheria.  

Braverman described the 40,000 people that have crossed the English Channel this year as “an invasion”.  

“Let’s be clear about what is really going on here: the British people deserve to know which party is serious about stopping the invasion on our southern coast and which party is not,” she told the Commons.  

“Let’s stop pretending that they are all refugees in distress. The whole country knows that is not true...  

“The system is broken. Illegal migration is out of control and too many people are interested in playing political parlour games, covering up the truth, than solving the problem.”  

 The home secretary also admitted to forwarding documents from the government email account to her personal email account on six occasions. And she was unable to quell questions from members about a potential security breach by sending an official policy document to a backbench MP and a parliamentary staffer. 

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