HDPA says ILG must go

HDPA writes:

Do we even need to say it? Iain Lees-Galloway’s got to get the boot.

He’s unravelling like a cheap stitch. The latest revelations about his decision to give Karel Sroubrek New Zealand residency are almost unbelievable.

The Immigration Minister previously told us he agonised over the decision. He told us it was “right up there… probably one of the most difficult decisions” he’s had to make.

Now he’s admitted he didn’t even read the full file. And the decision took him less than an hour.

That’s not quite the Garden of Gethsemane agony we’d imagined. It was more of a Ts and Cs decision. You know the kind. When you upgrade the app, your phone gives you a long list of new terms and conditions, and you just scroll right to the bottom and click “accept”. That’s what just happened.

Not a bad analogy. But with app updates you have to say yes. ILG didn’t have to say yes. No should have been the default and a yes would need a massive preponderance of evidence to justify.

Lees-Galloway sounds like an intern trying to explain why he got the stationery order wrong.

That, after blaming officials for the blunder, is close to pathetic. He can stop throwing his officials under the bus. It’s undignified. Even if they hadn’t given him the full info he needed, he wouldn’t know. He didn’t read the full file.

And, yes, of course, the Minister should have read the entire file. Even if it was hundreds of pages long. He can’t be expected to read every file given to him, but he should read the worrying ones. And this was one of them. Drugs. A false passport. Gangs. Those are all significant red flags.

Exactly. This was not a typical case.

It tells you how sloppy he was, that previous immigration ministers have lined up to give him a serve. All said he got it wrong.

Aussie Malcolm. Sir Kerry Burke. Max Bradford. They’re not just former National Party ministers having an easy crack. Sir Kerry is a former Labour man.

Bradford made a point of reminding us of Danny Butler, the Irishman who claimed he would be killed if sent back to Northern Ireland in the late 90s. Bradford sent him packing anyway. Butler is, according to Bradford, still alive and “making life very difficult” back home.

This case does remind me of the Danny Butler case. I worked in the PMs Office at the time. Butler did what the Czech guy did. Claimed he would be killed if deported. But his claims were false, and he’s been living for 20 years back in the country he claimed would be a death sentence for him.

Criminals facing deportation often claim their lives are at risk if deported. It’s been going on for decades. The difference is this time there was a Minister gullible enough to buy the story.

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