200 NGOs protest Foreign Secretary Liz Truss’ plans to deprioritise health, climate change and conflict prevention in new strategy
More than 200 British NGOs have signed an open letter to Foreign Secretary Liz Truss after civil servants warned of a “radical” review of the Government’s international development strategy, which would massively deprioritise global health, climate change and conflict prevention.
Ms Truss has ordered changes in the way the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) spends UK aid funding, prompting concerns from her own officials and 201 UK NGOs working in international development. The news follows a major restructure of the department last week, which saw the shock resignation of Moazzam Malik, a senior official.
The open letter to Ms Truss, organised by Bond, the UK network of NGOs, said:
“It would be short-sighted to drop critical issues like global health, climate change and conflict prevention from the forthcoming International Development Strategy. It would also cost lives.
“These are areas where the UK has a strong track record of impact and significant expertise and this move will undermine the UK’s ability to play our part globally in tackling urgent challenges, increasing security, and eradicating poverty.
“Withdrawing funding from one crisis to pay for another simply displaces the problem and ultimately does not reduce the costs. The right decision would be to restore the UK’s 0.7% GNI on Official Development Assistance (ODA) commitment.”