BOTH Theresa May and Jeremy Corbyn performed a disservice to politics with their respective antics over the Windrush scandal at Prime Minister’s Questions.
The Prime Minister appeared in denial about her role while the Opposition leader does not understand public concerns about illegal immigration.
The exchanges, which culminated with Mr Corbyn calling for Home Secretary Amber Rudd’s resignation, were about point-scoring rather than the actual policy.
The issue is, after all, about the Commonwealth citizens who sailed here after the Second World War to help rebuild Britain.
Why, therefore, has it taken several decades for their UK citizenship to be formally recognised with the necessary documentation? Successive governments appear to be at fault.
Why, if the Windrush generation and their children were classified as British all along, as Mrs May contends, was the Home Office – under her jurisdiction – stopping their rights to work and welfare and threatening them with deporation?
Why, also, does the compensation offered by the aforementioned Ms Rudd only appear to extend to the cost of Windrush citizens applying to reaffirm their residency rights – and not the very obvious distress caused to them?
These are the issues that should have been addressed at PMQs before Ms Rudd’s inquisition by the Home Affairs Select Committee. For, while Windrush is the culmination of decades of policy-making, the Home Secretary’s hesitant response when the scale of the scandal emerged does not inspire confidence in her leadership – or judgment.
And, while Labour scent political blood, the priority should be the Home Office getting its procedures in order, and ensuring the Windrush generation receive legal clarity about their residency, before they are insulted with an even greater injustice – inaction.