UK Border Agency condemned over immigration backlog
UK Border Agency (UKBA) staff dealt with a backlog of immigration cases so inefficiently that at one point 100,000 pieces of post were unopened, a report said today.
Chief Inspector of Borders and Immigration John Vine found that security checks were not properly carried out on old cases and that workers had failed to check the records of other Government departments.
Applications were placed into an archive of unresolved cases after "very minimal work", despite the agency assuring MPs that "exhaustive" checks had been carried out, he concluded.
The number of outstanding immigration and asylum cases rose by 25,000 in three months and is "spiralling out of control", making the total caseload the equivalent of the population of Iceland, the Commons Home Affairs Select Committee Chairman Keith Vaz has said.
More than 300,000 cases needed to be dealt with at the end of June, up 9% over the previous three months, the Commons Home Affairs Select Committee revealed.
But clearing the backlog should not be a rushed job done without the proper checks, the committee's report on the UK Border Agency (UKBA) warned.
Labour: Home Secretary 'lurching from shambles to shambles'
Shadow Home Secretary Yvette Cooper said the Home Secretary needed to "to get a grip" this evening. She said:
The UK Border Agency and Border Force are lurching from shambles to shambles. Yet ministers don't seem to have a clue what's going on. Instead of getting a grip, the Government just keeps making it worse."