The government has been roundly mocked after it was revealed that its promise to “take back control of our borders” actually means just putting a new border up in Kent.
Michael Gove announced today that a ‘Kent-access permit’ would be put in place to prevent blocks at the Channel after Brexit.
Responding to a question from Conservative former minister and MP for Ashford, Damian Green over Brexit preparations at the border, he said:
“That system has been developed, it’s being shared with businesses and we want to make sure that people use a relatively simple process in order to get what will become known as a “Kent-access permit”, which means that they can then proceed smoothly through Kent.”
“The idiot haulier”
Hauliers reacted angrily earlier today after the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster warned of 7,000-truck-long queues in Kent if they fail to prepare for the end of the Brexit transition period.
They accused Gove, who is responsible for no-deal planning, of attempting to “shift blame” for the possible impact of no trade deal being agreed with the EU.
In the document sent to logistics associations, which has been seen by the PA news agency, Mr Gove outlines a worst-case scenario in which between 30-50 per cent of trucks crossing the Channel will not be ready for new regulations coming into force on January 1.
Rob Hollyman, director of Essex-based haulage firm Young’s Transportation and Logistics, said this was “quite a clever statement” because it could lead people to blame “the idiot haulier”.
People on social media also seemed dismayed with the government’s solution to the border.
We’ve picked out some of the best reaction below:
If there is to be a border with Kent, it should be drawn with a ruler by a brown guy who has never been there— Ahir Shah (@AhirShah) September 23, 2020
This is a total failure of government isn’t it? We have left the EU, so this is nothing to do with Brexit. It’s a government so incompetent that in the middle of a pandemic they’ve got themselves into a position where they have to build a border around Kent. https://t.co/B0aKcsarP6— Brian Cox (@ProfBrianCox) September 23, 2020
Ok hear me out, if there's now a de facto border in Kent then Farage is now French.— James Felton (@JimMFelton) September 23, 2020
Passport to Kent: The Vote Lie Government’s plastic patriots erecting an internal border in England is crazy evidence that Brexit’s an expensive folly.— Kevin Maguire (@Kevin_Maguire) September 23, 2020
2016:— David Schneider (@davidschneider) September 23, 2020
“Let’s take back control of our borders!”
“Let’s put a new border in Kent!” https://t.co/frkdzxXBdH