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U.K.’s Demand For More Accountability, Transparency For International Development Aid Should Be Viewed With ‘Cautious Optimism’

Thomson Reuters Foundation: 2016: reasons to be (cautiously) optimistic
Saira O’Mallie, U.K. interim director of ONE

“…[W]hile it’s tempting to have a pessimistic view of 2016, it wasn’t without positives for the world’s poorest. … But more needs to be done in 2017. … June’s U.K./E.U. Referendum precipitated the change in government and Priti Patel’s appointment as secretary of state for international development. She announced more action to curb corruption by increasing accountability and transparency, and demanding U.K. aid is strictly linked to results. And this she demonstrated in September when the U.K. pledged £1.1 billion the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria — but only if several conditions around transparency and effectiveness were met. … Some wish for [Patel] to speed up her overhaul, but Ms. Patel has so far shown she can deliver on making sure taxpayers’ money is being used as intended — to end poverty. As we leave 2016 and its seismic political shocks to history, we can look ahead into 2017 with cautious optimism” (12/21).