Hastings and Rye MP Amber Rudd returns to the Cabinet

Hastings and Rye MP Amber Rudd is returning to the Cabinet, Number 10 has confirmed.

Friday, 16th November 2018, 4:13 pm
Updated Friday, 16th November 2018, 5:01 pm
Amber Rudd MP for Hastings & Rye
Amber Rudd MP for Hastings & Rye

Ms Rudd, who resigned as Home Secretary following the Windrush scandal, will take on the role of Work and Pensions Secretary following the resignation of Esther McVey, who stood down from the role on Thursday (November 15).

UK Prime Minister tweeted: “The Queen has been pleased to approve the appointment of Rt Hon Amber Rudd MP to be Secretary of State for Work and Pensions.”

Ms Rudd will become the sixth person to hold the role since March 2016.

After her return to the Cabinet was announced, Liz Truss, Chief Secretary to the Treasury, said it was ‘great to have Amber Rudd back’.

Sajid Javid MP, who replaced Ms Rudd as Home Secretary, said he was ‘thrilled’ to see her back in the Cabinet.

Earlier in the week, Ms Rudd, who supported Remain in the referendum, said she supported Theresa May’s draft withdrawal agreement because it ‘does deliver on the things that are important to many of us in Parliament’.

Shadow Home Secretary Diane Abbott MP who called on Ms Rudd to resign as Home Secretary in April, said: “Amber Rudd resigned because of her mismanagement of Windrush scandal. Now Theresa May puts her in the DWP (Department for Work and Pensions).

“Let’s hope she shows more concern for the victims of this department’s unfairness and cruelty than she did at the Home Office.”

Ms Rudd resigned as Home Secretary in April after she was criticised for the Government’s handling of the Windrush scandal, where some migrants from Commonwealth countries who settled in the UK and their relatives had been declared illegal immigrants.

In her letter to the Prime Minister at the time, Ms Rudd said she felt it was necessary to resign as she had ‘inadvertently misled’ the Home Affairs Select Committee over targets for removals of illegal immigrants during their questions on Windrush.

However, earlier this month, a report by Sir Alex Allan, the prime minister’s advisor on ministers’ interests, found Ms Rudd had been given the wrong information by her officials who then failed to clear up the problem.

In Sir Alex’s report, the former home secretary is shown to have asked her officers – before the Home Affairs Select Committee hearing – if there were any removal targets, to which she was told there were not.

The report’s executive summary says: “That led to her firm denial (“we do not have targets for removals”) in the hearing. I cannot establish how she was given this reply: the most likely explanation is crossed wires between her special adviser and her private office.”

“After the Home Secretary had given her answer in the hearing, there were confused email exchanges trying to establish the position on targets. The initial line that there were indeed no targets was undermined when it emerged that there had been a target until a few weeks previously.

“It proved impossible to establish a clear answer on whether targets had been allocated out regionally. The Home Secretary (and Glyn Williams who was appearing with her) were never provided with briefing that might have allowed them to put the correct position on the record.

“The Home Secretary was not, therefore, supported as she should have been during the hearing.”

Speaking to BBC Radio 4’s Nick Robinson in October, Ms Rudd said: “Unfortunately I was told certain things which turned out not to be true and even at the time I resigned I was told it was unlikely that we have illegally deported anybody and a week later the new Home Secretary (Sajid Javid) said we have deported 64.

“So I mean they (her officials) just didn’t know what the facts were.

“On top of that, somebody in the department was doing a lot of hostile leaking to the Guardian which meant that as I revealed I didn’t quite know what was going on there was this very hostile evidence circulating around the media as well.”