Suella Braverman slams Rishi Sunak’s Rwanda Bill as it ‘will not stop the boats’

Former Home Secretary Suella Braverman has slammed Rishi Sunak’s Rwanda Bill claiming it will “not stop the boats”.

The Prime Minister managed to fend off Tory rebels with the Rwanda Bill passing the second reading in the House of Commons by 313 votes to 269. Braverman was one of 37 Conservatives to abstain from the vote, despite a three-line whip to vote in favour.

The Fareham MP resigned from Sunak’s Cabinet in November, accusing the PM of a “betrayal” to voters after so far failing to stop small boat crossings. She has now taken to social media to explain why she was “unable” to support the Bill.

Braverman wrote: “Regretfully I was unable to support the ‘Rwanda Bill’.

READ MORE: Gary Lineker told ‘put a sock in it’ as furious Tory minister blasts BBC host

“While the Bill has some positive elements, the truth is that it will not stop the boats because there are too many loopholes.

“I welcome ministers’ willingness to tighten the Bill.

“We now need to work together to fix it.”

Mark Francois, chairman of the European Research Group (ERG), also abstained from the vote. However, on Monday he also said the Bill had too many loopholes.

Speaking to the Financial Times, he said right-wing Tories felt “the government would be best advised to pull the Bill and to come up with a revised version that works better than this one which has so many holes in it”.

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While Jonathan Gullis, a member of the backbench group the New Conservatives, was concerned the Bill would leave the court system struggling. He told TalkTv: “I still have those concerns that we will end up being bogged down by individual claims that means we will see very few people put on a plane to Rwanda.

“As the former immigration minister Robert Jenrick has said, we don’t want one or two token flights with five to 10 people. We need to see planes full to the hilt flying off to Rwanda, and then, I hope other safe countries.”

Jenrick resigned as immigration minister saying the plan would allow a “range of legal claims that will bog down our scheme”. He told the BBC: “I’m afraid it’s very clear to all those people who really understand how this system operates that this Bill will not succeed.”

The Safety of Rwanda Bill declares Rwanda safe to send asylum seekers. It has however emerged today that Rwanda will be allowed to ‘cherry pick’ which migrants fly from the UK.

A government spokesperson for the central African nation revealed depending on the information it received from Britain, any asylum seeker could be stopped from entering the country.

The Daily Mail reports a government source told the paper: “We will decide on whether to approve a transfer request for an individual based on information sent from the UK. This information includes, among other things, any criminal record or security issues known to the UK.”

But in a ray of hope for Rishi Sunak, Rwandan government spokeswoman Yolande Makolo said a criminal record does not “automatically” mean a migrant will be rejected.

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