POLITICS
01/06/2012 08:10 BST

UK Border Agency Paid Staff Bonuses Of Up To £10,000 Despite Failings

Senior staff at the troubled UK Border Agency were paid bonuses of up to £10,000 last year despite delays in immigration, border control scandals and an asylum backlog of 450,000 cases, MPs revealed today.

UKBA, which was recently branded "not fit for purpose" by Home Affairs Select Committee chairman Keith Vaz, made the pay-outs despite the committee recommending no bonuses should be paid.

Figure released on Friday show one in four senior civil servants received payouts of of up to £7,000.

Keith Vaz, who wrote to the Home Office's permanent secretary Dame Helen Ghosh to obtain the data, said in a statement on Friday that payments "in the midst of failures" should stop.

"The payment of bonuses in the midst of failures such as the relaxation of border controls, the inability to clear the asylum backlog and the reluctance to tackle bogus colleges through unannounced inspections must cease. We will continue to monitor the Home Office’s progress on this throughout the year.”

One in 50 received bonuses of between £20,000 and £22,000, one in 10 (11%) pocketed bonuses of between £15,000 and £20,000 and more than one in eight (13%) received bonuses of between £10,000 and £15,000.

In January the Home Affairs Select Committee called for a "root and branch" reform of how the UKBA and Home Office interact following an immigration scandal which saw top border agency official Brodie Clarke ousted after a 40-year-career.