Jeremy Vine’s show on Channel 5 has been swamped with Ofcom complaints after guest Nana Akua supported the idea that border patrol shouldn’t be prosecuted for not saving drowning refugees.
GB News presenter Akua joined the programme on Friday 15 October where she joined Jeremy and Jemma Forte in a tense discussion on whether Border Force staff potentially being given immunity from prosecution should migrants drown while crossing the Channel.
The debate was sparked after it was revealed Home Secretary Priti Patel is trying to introduce a clause to the Nationality and Borders Bill that could give officers legal protection.
The Bill, which is currently being read by Parliament, would make it a criminal offence to arrive in the UK as an asylum seeker without prior permission.
Akua said that it was ‘fair enough’ to know that you won’t be rescued if your boat sinks.
‘If people have come across from the Channel, from France, which is safe, why they would want to take a dangerous border crossing and then have to be rescued…,; Akua remarked during the episode.
‘Basically, what often happens is they throw themselves overboard so they then have to do a rescue mission, which is part of maritime law.’
She continued: ‘I personally think… look, as long as you know that if you come across you won’t be rescued if your boat sinks, I think that’s fair enough, and that’s why they’re saying if they come across with jet skis, then they can’t rescue them, it will actually hopefully stop the people trafficking because if you are supporting that they should be rescued, you’re actually supporting people trafficking which means that more people will come across because they think they’ll be ok.’
Nana later clarified her comments when a viewer asked: ‘If @Nanaakua1’s problem is purely with the safety of the refugees coming from France, I assume she’d support the UK assisting refugees to come to the UK directly from the countries they are fleeing?’
She replied: ‘Yes I would.. a proper system which will enable them to come to the UK safely and render people trafficking gangs redundant.’
Many viewers took issue with Nana’s comments on social media, with one writing: ‘‘If someone is drowning in front of you and you have the ability to save them, you save them. Every time. It’s really that simple.’
Another blasted: ‘Anyone who would stand by and watch another person drown while they had the ability to save them has no place in a civilised society.’
Ofcom has revealed that 167 people complained to them about last week’s show.
Jeremy Vine airs weekdays at 9.15am on Channel 5.