A damning report has just been published by the Chief Inspector of Borders and Immigration. David Bolt who undertook the report has uncovered that The Home Office lost track of 601,222 foreign, non-European Union visitors in the last two years who should have left the UK and as such there is no way of verifying whether they did or not.
Exit checks for EU destinations were stopped by John Major in 1994 whilst Tony Blair dropped them all together when he was elected in 1997. Theresa May had promised exit checks to take place 100% of the time when she was Home Secretary so this comes as a blow to her claims to be clamping down on Immigration.
The report uncovered that there were records of 10 million people whose period to remain in the UK had expired in the previous two years, and that the Home Office had made no effort to contact the some 500,000 non-visa visitors to confirm if they were still in the UK or not.
Bolt said in conclusion: “Overall, the sense was that the Home Office had overpromised when setting out its plans for exit checks, and then closed the exit check programme prematurely, declaring exit checks to be ‘business as usual’ when a significant amount of work remained to be done to get full value from them.”
“In the meantime, the Home Office needed to be more careful about presenting exit checks as the answer to managing the illegal migrant population, which for now remained wishful thinking. All Home Office projects that are done in support of the Programme must be properly prioritised, resourced and co-ordinated”.
Of this 10 million figure who knows exactly how many of them are still in the UK as the Government certainly doesn't!