For a political party with a core policy of cracking down on immigration to the UK, UKIP is doing a sterling job of shooting itself in the foot over the issue. After the party’s use of Eastern European immigrants to distribute its election literature, and a recent case in Manchester where a UKIP official was found to be employing seven illegal immigrants in his Indian restaurant, you would have thought the party would have checked the credentials of its European Parliament candidates ahead of the election.
But newly elected UKIP MEP Nathan Gill has added more migrant fuel to the hypocrisy fire this week after it emerged that his businesses have been employing “dozens” of workers from the Philippines and Eastern Europe.
Gill has admitted that it “could look bad” for a party campaigning on immigration, but added that the party had “never said it wants to stop all immigration – it wants to limit the numbers”.
According to the Independent, Gill said that his family’s businesses, which provide some services to Hull City Council, had been unable to “find local workers to do the jobs”.
In his role as a director of the various businesses, Gill oversaw the employment of workers, many of which earned less than £300 a week, and said that they were kept in bunkhouses as “temporary accommodation… until they could get something more permanent”.
The Western Mail reported that Gill said he was actually jealous of the workers’ situation. “We charged £50 a week inclusive of electricity to people who would be earning between £200 and £300 a week. I wish I had that proportion of spending money left after paying my mortgage.”
“If we hadn’t employed people from overseas, we’d have been called racist. The fact that we did employ immigrants is leading to charges of hypocrisy. But UKIP has never said it wants to stop all immigration – it wants to limit the numbers.”
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