Britain's Opposition Accused Government Planned to Cut Border Protection Budget
Britain's Opposition Labour Party accused the government to cut budget for border force by 6% in each of the next two years. The shadow home secretary Andy Burnham has repeated his call to Theresa May to reveal the budget plan.
The opposition asked government to reveal its budget plan after an insiders told to anticipate a 6% border force budget reduction for two years, in total of £88 million ($124 million). Shadow home secretary Andy Burnham told BBC that there "couldn't be a more serious time" to be strengthening borders, after the Brussels attacks.
"This is the worst possible time to be cutting U.K. border security," Burnham said as quoted by Bloomberg.
Following the islamic state terorrist attack on March 22 in Brussel, the UK conservative government was criticized for spending cuts. Mr, Burnham said that the government, in particular home secretary is "going to great lengths" to conceal further cuts planned for the agency. He said it is highly unusual the ministers have not released the Border Force budget, while the start of the new financial year only a few days away.
He said this should be challenged, and Mr. Burnham has already went letter to his counterpart in the government Theresa May to disclose her budget plan. He said that making a budget savings in this time would be a very serious mistake.
"The public has a right to know about the Government's plans for the UK border and that is why I call on them to publish these figures without delay and to drop these damaging cuts," Mr. Burnham said as quoted by The Guardian. "This decision is yet another consequence of George Osborne's botched spending review and budget. It has nothing to do with the EU referendum and everything to do with a government with its priorities wrong and whose austerity drive is putting our country at risk."
The Home Office responded saying that all necessary measures would be taken to protect the UK's border. Nevertheless, the ministry said the border force budget was still to be finalised. It also pointed out the £41 million ($58 million) investment to add more officers to crack down border crime, and other millions budget spent to improve security at French ports.
A spokeperson at Home Office said, "Over the next four years, we will increase the counter-terrorism budget by £500m and invest £130m in state-of-the-art technology at the border. All necessary funding and investment will be in place by the start of the next financial year."
Britain's opposition accused the government plan to cut budget for border force, as . Shadow Home Secretary urged government to disclose budget plan. While the government responded by promise to take all necessary measures to protect UK's border.