Members of the Liberal Democrat Party have called on the ministerial salary of Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab to be assigned for resettlement of Afghan refugees.
The early-day motion by Lib Dems on Monday comes on the wake of Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s preparation to defend his government’s handling of the Afghan crisis in a statement to the Commons, in which he is expected to commend the efforts of the British military. He is also expected to announce an allocation of £5 million to help military charities that provide support for veterans with mental health problems.
The premier will come under intense pressure from opposition parties, who accuse the government of mishandling the evacuation process in Afghanistan, which led to leaving many UK nationals and Afghan staff behind. He will also face mounting pressure over Raab’s decision to stay on holiday on the Greek island of Crete while Kabul was being retaken by the Taliban.
In their Monday’s motion, the Lib Dems targeted Raab’s £71,673 ministerial salary, which they asked to be paid for the resettlement of 10 Afghan refugees, following reports of a £557m deficit in funding.
Liberal Democrats Chief Whip Wendy Chamberlain said, “Dominic Raab is one of the worst foreign secretaries in British history. He has presided over the worst foreign policy disaster since the Suez and decided to spend more time on the beach instead of picking up the phone to help vulnerable Afghans.”
“His continued dithering and delays have put lives at risk. Therefore it’s only right that his pay be docked for failing to do his job properly,” Chamberlain said, adding that “by repurposing his ministerial salary, we can fund 10 Afghan refugees to resettle and build a new life here in the UK. This is a much better use of taxpayers’ money.”
Earlier last week, Raab appeared before the Commons Foreign Affairs Committee, bearing the pressure from the MPs to explain about the UK’s performance in the war-torn country, but finally failed to give any reasonable answer for his stay on holiday amid the Afghanistan turmoil.