Rwanda: Britain’s Guantanamo Bay?

Adebayo Adeniran
4 min readApr 14, 2022

Could this be start of something sinister?

Eric Masur via Unsplash

Immigration, for as long as I can remember, has been and still is the single, biggest fraught issue in Britain.

Elections have been won and lost on this one subject, more than any other. A Conservative politician, during a by-election in Smethwick Birmingham in 1964, came up with the slogan: If you want a Nigger for a neighbour, vote labour. Needless to say that he won and the Labour prime minister at the time — Harold Wilson —described him as a ‘parliamentary leper’.

Enoch Powell, became a pariah and martyr in the Conservative party, when he gave a speech in 1968, titled the rivers of blood. In it, he denounced his own government’s immigration policy and predicted that letting Black people into Britain would lead to people of colour dominating white folk and the ultimate demise of the United Kingdom.

But I must point out that this history stretches beyond the last seventy years.

Back in the 19th century, it was Polish and Romanian Jews fleeing the pogroms, who were at the receiving end of the hostility of the resident community; The Irish also felt the sting of the English in the worst way imaginable; you can argue with credibility that English terrorism in Eire and England was responsible for the extraordinary Irish migration to the United States.

Brexit would not have happened if the leading right wing politicians hadn’t tapped into existing deep seated anxieties about Polish, Romanian, Latvian, Czech, Kosovan, Albanian, Black and Asian people.

When I was a Conservative for a minute, twenty years ago, I remember Oliver Letwin, the Tory party’s head of policy, coming up with the idea of having an offshore processing center, as a response to the rising number of asylum seekers coming to Britain.

And for a while, the Tories couldn’t exactly work out where this offshore detention center would be or there weren’t any takers anywhere in the world.

That was until yesterday.

Today it emerged that Rwanda will become the holding center for all would be asylum seekers to the United Kingdom; all to the tune of 120 million pounds for the British taxpayer.



Adebayo Adeniran

A lifelong bibliophile, who seeks to unleash his energy on as many subjects as possible