Damian Green claims in today’s press “we have already seen the number of student visas issued drop by 30% in the 12 months to June 2012, compared with the same period in 2011”. Perhaps, dear boy, but as the Public Accounts Committee point out in today’s report,
"The result of the agency's poorly planned and ill thought-out course of action was chaos: an immediate high level of abuse of the new system and a surge in the number of student visas. In 2009 the number of migrants who abused the student route to work rather than study went up by as much as 40,000 to 50,000.”
In other words the abuse was actually caused by the government’s totally mismanaged policy, and by quoting a drop using 2011 as the base, all this man is saying is that he is beginning to sort out his own mess.
But of course he isn’t. He is just creating a new and more damaging one. I hold no particular brief for London Metropolitan University, but the VC Malcolm Gillies seems to be pretty confident that the UKBA report is “highly flawed” and on current form you would have to say he is likely to be right.
Read this, Mr Green, from the BBC:
The report said that, rather than cutting illegal migration, the points-based system had created a surge of as many as 50,000 more bogus students.
You created the bogus student surge and your typically inept response is to throw out legitimate students. You, sir, are a bloody disgrace.