Search icon


04th Mar 2022

Government should remove citizenship for dual nationals, half of Brits say

The YouGov results come as the PM tries to push through the Borders Bill which would criminalise refugees

People with dual nationality should be stripped of their British citizenship if they commit a serious crime, half of Brits say.

A YouGov poll for PoliticsJOE revealed that 57 per cent of people think the government should be able to remove citizenship for dual nationals, with a quarter believing they should be allowed to make British citizens stateless if they commit serious offences.

Under existing law, citizenship can be removed from people considered to pose a threat to the UK, including terrorism or war crimes, or if they obtained their citizenship fraudulently.

But it would be a breach of human rights legislation to send individuals back to a country where their life could be in serious danger.

The Home Office has come under fire in recent years after removing individuals from Britain with criminal convictions.

In 2019, The Guardian revealed that at least five people were killed in Jamaica after being deported. The killings took place after lawyers warned their lives were in danger if they were sent back to their “country of origin”, which has one of the highest per capita murder rates in the world.

Other cases include that of 29-year-old Bruce Mpofu who was deported for minor historical charges.

Mpofu, who had lived in Bradford since he was a child, was returned to Zimbabwe last September, owing to a burglary offence he committed in 2010.

New plans drawn up by the Home Secretary in the Nationality and Borders Bill could give government the power to strip people of their British citizenship without warning – a move that has been described as “uncivilised and legally disputable”.

Former cabinet minister David Davis wanted to amend the Bill to remove that clause – clause 9 – arguing it could put at risk people who have lived in the UK for almost all of their life.

Boris Johnson’s Borders Bill suffered four defeats in the House of Lords on Monday, including another controversial clause that sought to criminalise refugees who arrive in the UK through an irregular route.

Clause 11 would have meant that anyone arriving in the UK by an illegal route, such as by a small dinghy across the Channel, could receive a jail sentence of up to four years, have no recourse to public funds, and could have their family members barred from joining them.

Peers also amended the Bill to scrap Clause 9, that would allow the government to strip British citizenship without warning.

After the Lords have amended the bill, it will return to the House of Commons – where the government can decide on whether to accept any changes or altercations made.

Related Links