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David Lammy calls out Gov’t for ‘pandering to racism’

SPEAKING UP: David Lammy (Photo credit: HoC)

DAVID LAMMY has called out the government, accusing them of "pandering to a far-right racism" over its handling of the Windrush scandal.

The remarks were made at the House of Commons today (Feb 5) following the news that a further 18 people were wrongly sent back to the Caribbean - three who died before they could return to the UK.

In addition, a charter flight to Jamaica is reportedly scheduled for Wednesday - the first since the Windrush scandal - which has resulted in protests in the capital as many deem the deportations as a ‘slap in the face’ for the Jamaican community in the UK.

Speaking in the commons, The MP for Tottenham branded the latest deportations "nothing less than a national scandal".

“Every single one of these cases is a shocking indictment of your government's pandering to a far-right racism, sham immigration targets and the dog-whistle of the right-wing press," said Lammy.

He questioned why people are being deported on flights to Jamaica, and why it is acceptable that the families of people who have been "killed by the government's incompetence" are being treated this way.

"Why is it still in this country that black lives matter less?" he added.

Home Secretary Sajid Javid hit back at Lammy, saying the schedule deportations were a charter flight "of foreign national offenders only", and that "every single one of them [was] convicted of a serious crime".

Javid added that he remains committed to the Windrush generation, and that righting the wrongs of Windrush citizens is at "the forefront of my role as home secretary".


Labour MP Kate Osamor said the Government’s focus should be on ensuring that people affected by the Windrush scandal are able to reintegrate themselves into the community.

According to the MP, since December 2018, the Government agreed to support Windrush citizens affected by the scandal with up to £5,000 for their mistreatment, but that access to the fund is "overly stringent".

“The scheme must work for the most vulnerable,” she said, adding: "victims require immediate and ongoing assistance".

Home Secretary Sajid Javid says the Home Office has been working with the Treasury and Department for Housing, Communities and Local Government to ensure that citizens of the Windrush generation are well supported.

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