Brexit: Theresa May 'sabotaged' pro-immigration campaign, cabinet document suggests

Leaked Cabinet document leads to accusations Theresa May 'sabotaged' Government plan to explain immigration benefits for Britain

The Prime Minister has been accused of being 'hostile' to a drive to explain migration benefits in the EU referendum campaign

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Theresa May has been accused of sabotaging Government plans to explain the benefits of immigration to the public in a cabinet document leaked to the press. 

The Independent acquired a report from May 5, 2016 which suggests that Ms May, then the home secretary, refused to back a pre-referendum drive to show the positive impacts migration can have on the economy and public services.

The aim of the drive would have been to provide a more effective counter-argument to those provided by the Leave campaign, whose proponents consistently claimed migrants were draining Britain's jobs and resources.

In the report, initially prepared for Cabinet Secretary Sir Jeremy Heywood, an official wrote: "Despite attending the initial cross-Whitehall meeting, the Home Office haven't really engaged with this work at all - I assume because they do not think the Home Secretary [Ms May] will agree to it."

The leak has been acted upon by MPs involved in Open Britain, who have urged the Government to drop its immigration target of reducing flow into the UK to 100,000 migrants per year.

Labour MP Chuka Umunna said "an ideological Prime Minister undermined the referendum campaign by failing to make the case for the value of migration. She helped sabotage Remain by refusing to properly engage with the migration debate."

Downing Street has not commented on the leak.