Rishi Sunak loses £1,000 Rwanda flights bet with Piers Morgan

Rishi Sunak has lost his £1,000 bet with Piers Morgan after he conceded deportation flights to Rwanda would not happen before an election.

The prime minister shook hands with the YouTuber on his show on the bet which was described as taking politics to “a new low”. But the morning after calling a snap contest on 4 July, the prime minister said asylum seekers will be deported to the east African nation only “if I am re-elected”.

Mr Morgan has already goaded Mr Sunak asking him to make his donation payable to the British Red Cross.

The prime minister accepted the bet offered by the TalkTV broadcaster that asylum seekers will be sent on one-way flights to Kigali before voters hit the polls in February.

Rishi Sunak and Piers Morgan bet £1,000 on Rwanda flights leaving before next election (Piers Morgan Uncensored/TalkTV)
Rishi Sunak and Piers Morgan bet £1,000 on Rwanda flights leaving before next election (Piers Morgan Uncensored/TalkTV)

Mr Morgan posted on X: “Dear Prime Minister @RishiSunak@10DowningStreet .. following your admission today that no flights will take off to Rwanda before the election, please send £1000 to @BritishRedCross - Kind regards, Piers.”

In the interview, Mr Morgan told Mr Sunak: “I’ll bet you £1,000 to a refugee charity, you don’t get anybody on those planes before the election. Will you take that bet?”

Mr Sunak shook hands with the TV host to seal the deal and stressed he is “working incredibly hard to get the people on the planes”.

He also said Rwanda is part of an overall plan to bring down the number of migrants crossing the English Channel that is “working”.

It comes as asylum seekers already being held in detention ahead of being sent to Rwanda fear more suicide attempts and hunger strikes could take place ahead of flights taking off because migrants feel there is “no hope”.

At the time Labour, the Liberal Democrats and the SNP all pounced on his hand-shake bet with the TV host – with the Scottish National Party reporting Mr Sunak over a potential breach of the ministerial code.

The SNP’s Westminster leader Stephen Flynn, in a post on X, said: “The lives of some of the most vulnerable people on the planet reduced to a crude bet. It’s just a game to these people. Depraved.”

Green MP Caroline Lucas told The Independent Mr Sunak had plunged to a new low.

She said: “Words fail me that the prime minister and Piers Morgan can be so callous about the awful Rwanda policy that they place a bet on it.

“These are people’s lives they’re gambling over. Yet Sunak thinks nothing of casually agreeing to a £1k bet. He’s supposed to be the head of government, not a punter in a casino. This is a new low in our politics.”

It came after Mr Sunak scored an own goal by asking Welsh brewers if they were looking forward to this summer’s football, despite the national team not qualifiying for the Euros.

Mr Sunak asked staff at a brewery in Barry, South Wales, on Tuesday if they were looking forward to the revenue the tournament would bring in. One of the pub workers was quick to correct him on his mishap, following Wales’s play-off final defeat to Poland in March.