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Migrant crisis: Lee Anderson furious over net migration ‘we need a cap NOW!’

Lee Anderson has demanded a cap on net migration in a furious rant in the Commons.

The Deputy Chairman of the Conservative Party and MP for Ashfield said: “The people of Ashfield have had enough of this.

“7,000 on the council house waiting list. People struggling to get a gp appointment. People struggling to get a dentist appointment, struggling to get school places.”

Gesturing to the Labour benches, he added: “Its about time minister that we have a cap on migration and put some divide between us, and that lot over there.”

Responding to Anderson, Immigration Minister Jenrick said: “Well, my honourable friend who represents the constituency near mine, speaks for my constituency as much as he does for his in saying that the British public want us to get on with the job now, in bringing down the numbers coming to this country.

“The Prime Minister, the Home Secretary and I are committed to bringing forward a set of fundamental reforms which I hope will achieve the objective that he’s set out.

“There are definitely strong arguments for using caps, whether in general or on specific visas. But these are conversations that we need to conclude with the Government.”

Figures from the Office for National Statistics published last week showed that net migration soared to 745,000 last year, a record figure.

This came just one week after the Government’s flagship plan to tackle illegal migration, the Rwanda pact, was deemed illegal by the Supreme Court.

Backbench MPs are growing increasingly frustrated with the Government’s failure to tackle the problem, despite manifesto pledges to cut numbers.

The figures represent a dramatic increase from pre-Brexit immigration levels, with net migration for the year ending June 2015 – the year before the UK voted to leave the EU – at 336,000.

Speaking before Anderson in the Commons, Immigration Minister Robert Jenrick hit out at soaring migration, pledging to introduce urgent measures to tackle the “abuse” of the visa system.

While he reiterated an old pledge to crack down on the number of student dependents coming to the UK, Jenrick did not announce any tangible new measures in his statement.

Responding to an urgent question from Shadow Home Secretary Yvette Cooper, Jenrick said: that soaring migration “places untold pressure on housing, supply, public services and make successful integration virtually impossible”.

He continued: “As the Prime Minister and Home Secretary have repeatedly made clear, this is far too high, and the Government remains committed to reducing levels of legal migration in line with the manifesto commitment.

“Every single Conservative MP stood on it 2019 and it is the express wishes of the British public, as they have articulated at every single general election in the last 30 years.

“Earlier this year, we took action to tackle an unforeseen and substantial rise in the number of students bringing dependents into the UK to roughly 150,000.

“This means that from courses starting in January, students on taught postgraduate courses will no longer have the ability to bring dependents. Only students on designated postgraduate research programmes will be able to bring those dependents. This will have a tangible effect on net migration.”

He said the Government will introduce “further substantive measures” to tackle migration in the coming weeks.

But responding, Cooper said: “Where is the Home Secretary, and what on earth is going on?

“The media was briefed that he was going to make a statement on net migration yesterday or today, but nothing. and he is nowhere.

“The Immigration Minister has been everywhere, madly briefing all of his ideas, but who speaks for the Government?

“Net migration figures are now three times the level that they were at the 2019 election when the Conservatives promised to reduce them, and that includes a 65 per cent increase in work migration this year.

“That reflects a complete failure by the Conservatives on both the economy and on immigration.”

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