Wellingborough and Rushden MP Peter Bone has denied a Government campaign telling illegal immigrants to go home or face arrest is racist.
A Twitter campaign has been launched against the pilot scheme run by the Home Office, which includes an advert advising illegal immigrants how they can return to their country of origin without facing charges.
Many activists have suggested the tone of the posters is racist.
But that is something denied by Conservative MP Peter Bone, who is to debate the issue with Independent columnist Owen Jones on Channel 5 this evening.
“In Wellingborough we have got a huge number of illegal immigrants,” he said. “I don’t mind the Government trying something that will get people to go home voluntarily.
“I understand it’s a pilot, it’s targeted in London boroughs where there is a particular problem.
“I have always argued the Government should pilot things to see if they work. Who’s to say it’s not going to work?
“I am sure there are many people who came here illegally who want to go back but they are scared they will be arrested. I don’t think the Government should be criticised for trying something.”
Asked if the tone of message was distasteful, Mr Bone added: “I just don’t buy that. I have never met a legal immigrant who thinks it’s a good thing people are here illegally.”