The Home Secretary James Cleverly has touched down in Rwanda, aiming to solidify a new asylum treaty with the East African state as part of Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s urgent attempts to rectify his government’s flailing immigration strategy. 
Following a damning ruling by the Supreme Court in November that deemed the previous Rwanda immigration pact unlawful, Sunak has hastily pledged contingency measures for the swift formation of a revised treaty, coupled with emergency parliamentary legislation to bypass any further potential legal hurdles.
Critics argue that the hurried endeavour has exposed the government’s desperation to salvage a plan that has already faced significant legal challenges.
Seemingly oblivious to the challenges faced, Cleverly commented on his Rwanda visit,
“We are clear that Rwanda is a safe country, and we are working at pace to move forward with this partnership to stop the boats and save lives.
“Rwanda cares deeply about the rights of refugees, and I look forward to meeting with counterparts to sign this agreement and further discuss how we work together to tackle the global challenge of illegal migration.” 
Rwanda to receive additional funds
Amidst the speculation surrounding this diplomatic manoeuvre, it has been reported that Rwanda is leveraging its position to secure additional funds beyond the initial £140 million committed to the controversial scheme.
The Sunday Times has even reported an alleged £15 million top-up payment to sweeten the deal. 
However, during a meeting with Rwanda’s President Paul Kagame at the COP28 climate talks in Dubai, Rishi Sunak remained tight-lipped about the additional costs involved.
Contrary to Downing Street’s assertion that Rwanda has made no demands for extra funds, scepticism remains.
The lack of transparency also raises questions about the true nature of negotiations and the potential financial burdens on the UK.
Presence of UK lawyers denied by Rwanda
In response to concerns raised by the Supreme Court, there are reports suggesting that British lawyers might find a presence in Rwandan courts.
This strategic move is apparently aimed at addressing the court’s apprehension about the “real risk” of individuals being deported, regardless of the validity of their asylum claims — a clear violation of international law.
However, Yolande Makolo, spokesperson for the Rwandan government, vehemently dismissed the notion of British lawyers stationed in their courts, arguing,
“We have non-removal clauses providing that no relocated individual shall be removed from Rwanda.” 
Sunak in a sigh of relief
Earlier this week, Rishi Sunak saw off a major rebellion within the Conservatives when his revised Rwanda immigration plan was put to a vote in Parliament.
Prior to the ballot, influential right-wing factions of the Tory party known as the “five families” had threatened to either vote against or abstain in the vote, unless Sunak strengthened the policy.
Sunak has placed the contentious approach at the heart of his premiership and there were serious expectations that his policy would fail, imperiling his rule. In the end, however, the government scraped together a 313-269 result, a majority of 44.
Despite his close shave, there are further obstacles that the Prime Minister faces in the new year. A second reading and further votes on the Rwanda bill will follow, as with standard parliamentary protocol.
And Sunak is expected to face further resistance from within his party and human rights organisations who argue the bill breaks international and national human rights laws.
James Cleverly, the newly appointed Home Secretary, seems to be continuing down the path of his predecessor, Suella 'Cruella' Braverman, in taking an inhumane approach to asylum seekers.
However, even with the signing of this revised Rwanda-UK pact, it remains painfully obvious that the plan is a complete non-starter. Whoever devised the idea in the first place needs to take a reality check, for sending men, women, and children who have travelled with grave risk to their lives in order to reach the UK in search of a better life, only to then be boarded onto planes and taken 4,000 miles away to another continent... this is appalling to say the least.
Moreover, British taxpayers will be shocked to hear that £240 million has already been squandered in payments to Rwanda for their side of the deal, despite not a single asylum seeker having been flown to the East African state!
The Conservatives have been in power for the last thirteen years, but they have not done anywhere near enough to please their own supporter base in regards to reducing net migration. In actuality, the numbers have skyrocketed; the Office for National Statistics said in its June 2023 data, 'over the past two years net migration has been at the highest level we have seen'.
This country deserves better from its government. At this moment in time, it is as though we are being led by prison wardens with performance targets that demand the maximum number of prisoners to be shipped off to Africa for the crime of seeking safety.