The UK’s Home Affairs Committee has said that it could take up to 37 years to clear the country’s immigration backlog.
According to the cross-party committee made up of MPs, there are currently more than 502,000 unresolved cases in the immigration queue while the number of foreign offenders living in the UK awaiting deportation also rose last year to 4,102.
The findings were the result of an inquiry into the now defunct UK Border Agency, which was broken up in March after a number of high level failures came to public attention.
However, the Committee’s chairman, Keith Vaz, believes that unless the Home Office starts to get tough on tightening border control soon, nothing will be gained from scrapping the Border Agency.
“The backlog of cases has now hit a staggering half a million people. This could fill Wembley Stadium to capacity six times over,” Vaz said. “At the current rate it will take 37 years to clear and the Home Office cannot confirm that this is the last of the backlogs.”
“[Home Secretary] Theresa May described the UK Border Agency as ‘closed, secretive and defensive’ — however despite abolition nothing appears to have changed apart from the name,” he added.