Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer is under pressure to act after an immigration lawyer advertising her services to illegal immigrants seeking to stay in the U.K. turned out to be a Labour party councilor.
Irim Ali, a qualified solicitor specializing in immigration law and citizenship, had a social media post go viral last week in which she touted her services for those who had either arrived illegally in the U.K. or had overstayed their visas, urging them to get in touch with her so she could help secure their right to remain in the country.
“Do not fear. Irim Ali is here to help you regularize your visa in the U.K.,” she told viewers, before explaining that she would assist with the submission of a residency application to the Home Office based on human rights laws often used by immigration lawyers to delay or overturn deportation orders issued to illegal immigrants.
On Thursday, conservative broadcaster Nigel Farage revealed that Ali is an elected Labour councilor and cabinet member of Newcastle City Council in the northeast of England. The local politician is responsible for the council’s housing and planning strategies.
Farage asked Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer whether or not he supported Ali’s actions in openly admitting to helping illegal migrants stay in the U.K. and giving advice to submit applications based on human rights laws.
“Same old Labour,” posted Conservative MP Alexander Stafford, while fellow MP Tom Hunt added, “Nothing about this is surprising.”
“This is the grim reality beneath the spin – the actual Labour party that expects you to vote it into government next year,” added political commentator Patrick O’Flynn.
The Labour leader has yet to respond to Farage’s request for comment, but his party has remained fiercely pro-immigration through its opposition to the conservative’s proposed legislation to clamp down on the influx of illegal immigration experienced on England’s southern shores in recent years.