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'APD and visa bonds are direct attack on black communities'

BORDER CONTROL: The Government has proposed charging Ghanaians and Nigerians a £3,000 deposit to visit the UK

FROM AIR Passenger Duty (APD) to the £3,000 visa bond [applicable to Nigerian and Ghanaian visitors to the UK], to issues surrounding khat [a herbal stimulant which is to be classified as a class C drug], Voice readers could suspect the Government has begun a campaign of xenophobia, commonly known as ‘ethnic cleansing.’

As though enough psychological damage has not been inflicted upon an already beleagured community, the Home Secretary adds insult to injury with her political mind games, when she declared “stop and search should not be based on skin colour.” Since when did the Tory Party and its out of touch ministers ever exhibit due care and concern towards anyone?

David Cameron labelled the UK Independence Party (UKIP) as “fruit cakes and closet racists” – a statement I vehemently disagree with and find insulting, not just to me but to the many black and ethnic voters who have in the past supported the Conservatives.

In order to attract black voters at the 2015 General Election, Cameron would do well to follow the example of [UKIP leader] Nigel Farage who has shown commitment to people of all colours and creed. It is Cameron, not UKIP, who has portrayed himself to be a “closet racist” by under-writing Theresa May’s immigration policies.


UKIP’s policy on immigration is centred on border control and illegal immigration, prior to coming out of the EU, which is where funding should be directed. If we exit the EU, we would be free to set our own laws and manage immigration accordingly. Citizens from all countries would have to line up and be counted, not just African and Asian nations, thus giving everyone an equal chance of entry without being penalised because of their continent of birth. How can our Government, in today’s world, make such discriminatory policies?

COMMENT: Winston McKenzie

UKIP is the only national political party that caters for the Commonwealth. It is already printed and published in our manifesto.

The increase of APD, together with the recent announcement that people from African and Asian countries will be compelled to pay a £3,000 visa deposit on top of the ticket cost and other travel expenses, is beyond belief. These policies are antagonistic and are seen among black and ethnic minority communities as divisive and discriminatory.

Spiralling costs will make family reunions almost impossible. In the second instance, who has a spare £3,000 at a moment’s notice to go to a funeral, or wedding for that matter? So weddings, births, deaths – forget it!


The Conservatives continue to make inept statements about reducing immigration without care for the black community. Still we are lobbied for our vote. Why, I wonder, has the Coalition not had the intelligence or conviction to create a viable in/out border system with sufficient staff to man the ports of entry?

As a member of the 27-state European Union, we are compelled to give unlimited access to Eastern Europeans, to whom we owe nothing, who are at liberty to travel without restrictions and use all our resources and facilities as EU citizens.

APD, first introduced in 1994, has continued to soar unabated, despite criticism from the aviation industry. The Government continues to draw huge amounts of revenue from this penal tax. Passengers jetting out to distant America’s West Coast pay far less than flying to nearer African, Asian or Caribbean destinations. As far as I’m concerned, this whole policy is centred upon ethnicity, not immigration as a whole.

Winston McKenzie is the UKIP spokesman for the Commonwealth

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