Why should Africans care about the UK’s general election results?

Why should Africans care about the UK’s general election results?

In less than a few hours, on the 4th of July, Britons will go to the polls to elect a new Parliament. Most of the polls conducted indicate that either a new government will take over or a coalition government will be the result of the votes.

Since the Second World War, all the Governments in the United Kingdom (UK) have been formed by either the Labour Party or the Conservative Party.

The concern now comes in Africa, where many have been wondering how these elections will affect the continent. It will be a crucial moment tomorrow for voters in the UK as well as Africans. Immigration, education, and Rwanda-Small boats have been topics addressed by politicians in their manifestos.

The main political parties in the race are the ruling Conservative Party and the Labour Party, represented by incumbent Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and Hon Sir Keir Starmer.

The Conservative government has been advocating sending illegal migrants to Rwanda by flight. According to BBC News Africa, at least 300 migrants who are in the UK are expected to be sent to Rwanda. The Labour Party believes the best solution to tackle the illegal immigration crisis in Britain is to introduce new security border patrol guards. The Liberal Democrats would like to provide safe and legal routes for refugees.

Another factor that will play a role in the upcoming election is immigration policies. The main opposition party, the Labour Party, wants to reform the points-based immigration system and end long-term reliance on overseas workers. The ruling Tory or Conservative Party wants to fix annual numbers for work and family visas, prioritizing high-skilled migrants.

According to a BBC News report, it is estimated that 1.2 million people came to the UK in 2023. The second-highest number of migrants, 141,000, are believed to have come from Nigeria (Source: Office of National Statistics).

Under the incumbent ruling party, African students studying in Britain had the opportunity to be granted a graduation visa. The visa provided foreign students with access to stay in the UK for at least two years after graduation. In the postgraduate research program, students had the opportunity to bring their family members.

Nigel Farage of the Reform UK party, prominently known for leading the Brexit campaign, is against the policy that allows students to bring their families to the UK. However, the vocal Green Party is opposed to Farage, as it aims to go as far as giving visa holders the right to vote. With the scramble for economic and political influence in Africa by Western European Union countries, China, and Russia, Britain is also aiming to build strong bilateral relationships with the continent.

Tapiwa Rubaya

Tapiwa Rubaya is the current affairs, fashion and sports reporter at My Afrika Magazine.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *