Suella Braverman allegedly refused to sign off on hotel bookings for migrants because they were in “Tory voting areas”, according to LBC reports.
The home secretary has come under fire over “wretched” conditions at Manston processing centre, where overcrowding has resulted in asylum seekers living in squalor.
Chief inspector of borders and immigration David Neal told MPs he was left “speechless” by what he saw at the Manston Airport site in Kent, prompting him to write to the home secretary with his concerns.
Migrants are meant to be held at the short-term holding facility, which opened in January, for 24 hours while they undergo checks before being moved into immigration detention centres or asylum accommodation – currently hotels.
The Commons Home Affairs Committee heard the site was already “outstripping” capacity.
It was originally meant to hold between 1,000 and 1,600 people but Neal said there were 2,800 people at the site when he visited on Monday, with more due to arrive.
He said: “The numbers that have been described are clearly outstripping the capacity of the site.”
The lack of officers and guards to match the number of people was “sufficiently alarming” he said, adding: “When I discovered that I was frankly speechless and I’m not someone who is normally speechless.”
A senior Home Office source told LBC that Braverman was presented with options for locations to move asylum seekers from the overcrowded site in Kent but wouldn’t approve those in Conservative seats.
It’s claimed three hotels were approved last week which are in Labour constituencies, although the source would not confirm where these are.
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