Development Aid ‘One Of The Best Uses Of Public Money’

IRIN: Welcome to the global war on aid
Paul Currion, IRIN columnist

“…The U.K. now has a secretary of state for international development who doesn’t think her department should exist. Things aren’t much better across the Atlantic. It’s anybody’s guess what will happen in the U.S., the world’s single largest donor, following the election of Donald Trump. … Where the U.S. and the U.K. go, other countries are likely to follow as multilateralism loses ground. Faced with the prospect of a war of attrition in which the global poor are likely to be collateral damage, it’s worth remembering that the real problem the populist right has with overseas aid is not how it is spent, but that it exists at all. … In this context defending cash transfers or explaining CEO pay packets, while necessary, will not be enough to change the minds of those already opposed to foreign aid. Nor will the war on aid be won through the usual NGO tactics of hand-wringingly polite press releases and slickly edited testimonials. … The aid industry needs to connect to their public using innovative approaches … [A]id is not just a sensible use of public money — if we do it right, it’s one of the best uses of public money” (1/11).