Robert Jenrick, the immigration minister, has claimed in parliament that up to a fifth of male asylum seekers pretend to be children when they arrive in the UK. However, the Home Office’s own data shows that the actual figure is only 1 %.

Information obtained by the factchecking organisation, Full Fact, via a freedom of information request, shows that about 1 % of males arriving on small boats at Western Jet Foil between 1st January and 7th November 2022 claimed to be under 18, but were later discovered to be over 18.

Jenrick has ignored requests to correct the parliamentary record.

Full Fact has also expressed concern about Suella Braverman’s use of immigration statistics.On March 7th 2023, she accused Labour of leaving a far bigger asylum backlog that currently exists. But when Labour left power, the backlog stood at 18,954, while it currently stands at around 161,000.

The Office of Statistics Regulation has written to Matthew Rycroft, the permanent secretary for the Home Office, emphasising the importance of transparent statistics.