Suella Braverman has criticised the “exorbitant” cost of housing migrants in UK hotels, claiming that it costs the taxpayer £6.8million per day. She told the House of Commons the situation is “wholly unacceptable”. The Home Secretary added: “When I arrived as Home Secretary in September at the Home Office, I was appalled to find out there were around 35,000 migrants staying in Home Office at exorbitant cost to the taxpayer. I instigated an urgent review.”
Ms Braverman, who has been accused of ignoring legal advice on housing migrants at Manston, denied that this was the case.
She said: “Like the majority of British people, I am very concerned about hotels. But I have never blocked their usage.
“Indeed, since I took over, 12,000 people have arrived, 9,500 people have been transferred out of Manston or Weston Jet Foil, and many of them into hotels.
“And I have never ignored legal advice. As a former attorney general, I know the importance of taking legal advice into account.
“At every point, I have worked hard to find alternative accommodations.”
Earlier this week, Ms Braverman was accused of ignoring legal advice, with a Government source telling the Times: “Three weeks ago she was told directly by Home Office officials of the illegality of the site.
“It is an unofficial detention centre.
“She knew exactly what she was doing and she still went ahead with it. She was also told at the same time that this could lead to a public inquiry.”
Suella Braverman also admitted that the asylum system is “broken”, adding: “illegal immigration is out of control.”
But Tory MP Roger Gale blamed Ms Braverman directly for the issues, saying: “That facility operated magnificently and very efficiently indeed 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.”
MPs from the Conservative Common Sense Group, including Lee Anderson, Marco Longhi and Brendan Clarke Smith, have turned out in full force to support Ms Braverman.
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