Lack of parliamentary vote on aid cuts ‘nothing short of shameful’ says Bond

NGO network Bond has criticised MPs' lack of say on government plans to cut the UK Aid budget.

The government is looking to slash international aid from 0.7% of gross national income to 0.5% despite concern from aid charities and MPs.

A group of rebel Conservative MPs, including former prime minister Theresa May, had sought to vote on the issue in parliament this week. However, the Speaker of the House, Lindsay Hoyle, has decided not to allow a vote on the issue.

Bond said it is “regretful” at the decision not to include an amendment on reinstating the 0.7% target.

“The government’s continued attempts to prevent parliament from having a meaningful and effective say on whether the aid cuts should be reversed is nothing short of shameful,” it said.

Its statement added: “Too many aid and development programmes helping the most marginalised people have been closed down, taking away the basics, clean water and sanitation, vaccinations or education for children, food and shelter during conflict.

“How can the UK expect other G7 nations to step forward, when we ourselves are stepping back, despite knowing there is no economic need for us to balance our books on the backs of the world's poorest people?

“The government should live up to its manifesto commitment and reverse cuts to the aid budget urgently or give parliament a say.”

This week it emerged that almost half of voters in marginal Conservative/LibDem constituencies want the UK government to commit to spend the same as its allies on international aid.

In May Bond revealed details of how the cuts will impact its work to support international development.

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