Our pledge to scrap the National Identity Register and ID cards is one step closer to fulfilment.

The Immigration Minister, Damian Green, gave a statement to the House yesterday confirming the process. This is encouraging news for those of us who value freedom: we now won’t have to go to prison over it. Both schemes were wholly illiberal and against the traditional sense of what it means to be British.

Here is the full statement:

I am today placing in the Library certificates of destruction from contractors confirming compliance with section 3 of the Identity Documents Act 2010. These certificates are accompanied by a covering note that sets out the process and method of delivery of destruction of the national identity register.

I can also confirm that all ID cards ceased to be valid legal documents on 22 January 2011. Cardholders were notified by post to their registered address shortly after enactment of the 2010 Act and border agencies and other interested parties were informed of the cancellation of the scheme.

The cost of decommissioning ID card systems and securely destroying the personal data is, subject to final invoices, £375,000. The cost of terminating and amending National Identity Service contracts with suppliers was £2.253 million. I will also be placing in the Library a copy of a letter sent on 10 February 2011 to the hon. Member for Hackney South and Shoreditch (Meg Hillier) that sets out the breakdown of these costs in more detail.

We are slowly undoing 13 years of New Labour’s increasingly oppressive State control and I look forward to sitting on committee for the Protection of Freedoms Bill

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