Sunday, September 27, 2009

Leopard changes spots: Mail venerates an alleged illegal immigrant

Wonders never cease.

I hesitate to say Baroness Scotland should resign. What do they think in Scotland? - I wonder. I have enormous admiration for the lady.

However. The Mail says that she allegedly did not ask her Tongan employee to show her passport during a ten minute employment interview. As Attorney-General, you would have thought Baroness Scotland would have more sense.

However, reading the Mail story (someone has to, I suppose) one wonders whether the housekeeper is the villain of the piece. She'd been allegedly working illegally here for four years and there is an alleged forged second passport at the heart of the investigations into her.

Scotland (the Baroness not the country) has been fined £5,000 for not carrying out the right checks. Fair dues. But come off it, is an employee, even the Attorney General, meant to be a one person investigation unit in addition to their legal requirements (for the non-performance of which, the Baroness has already fessed up and paid her fine)?

And does this really impact on Baroness Scotland's discharge of her governmental duties? If someone can come up with some evidence of incompetance in her role, that would be different. Perhaps she was too busy concentrating on her governmental role to faff about with paperwork.

Having said that, there appears to have been shocking ignorance of the law shown by the Attorney-General and for that I have great sympathy with the calls for her to resign. But the housekeeper has presumably been paid by the Mail and they are using her story as knocking copy with which to beat Scotland. This seems to be a very unusual, some might say uncomfortable, position for the the Mail. Just read the Mail story and its rosy picture of the housekeeper. It's an extraordinary turnaround for the Mail.

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