UK organisations respond to report on corruption and UK aid

A group of 11 UK organisations, including WaterAid, have come together to issue a response to the recent Aid Impact report.


4 Nov 2014 | UK

Nearly all the UKs main newspapers and broadcasters covered the launch last week of The Independent Commission on Aid Impact’s report on DFID's Approach to Anti-Corruption and its Impact on the Poor, with some newspapers very critical of the role that UK Government aid plays in relation to corruption in the developing world.

A group of 11 UK organisations, including WaterAid, have come together to issue the following response:

The Independent Commission on Aid Impact report on 'DFID's Approach to Anti-Corruption and its Impact on the Poor' highlights the importance of tackling corruption around the world.

We agree that more can and should be done by the UK Government and the international community to stop corruption, which undermines our efforts to tackle poverty and inequality. This should form an important part of DFID's efforts to address both the symptoms and root causes of poverty.

It should be acknowledged that the UK Government has done much more to counter corruption than most countries. The International Development Secretary, Justine Greening, has spoken publicly about the need to tackle corruption, while the Prime Minister has championed stronger government checks and balances and improved transparency.

More can and must be done, as corruption both causes and perpetuates poverty.

The answer is to reform corrupt institutions, deter and punish corrupt individuals and companies and invest in strategies to make aid more effective. Many UK charities are supporting the daily efforts of ordinary citizens in developing countries to fight against corruption. The aid the UK gives is a vital part of the picture in supporting these efforts.

This means the answer is not to stop giving aid. That punishes poor people twice: firstly by having to live with corrupt governments and secondly by taking away the funds needed for health, education, water and sanitation.

Signed by:

Amy Dodd, Coordinator, UK Aid Network
Ben Jackson, Chief Executive, Bond
Diane Sheard, UK Director, The ONE Campaign
Graham Gordon, Head of Policy, CAFOD
Jenny Ricks, Acting Director of Policy, Advocacy and Campaigns, ActionAid UK
Joy Saunders, Chief Executive Officer, Integrity Action
Justin Byworth, Chief Executive, World Vision UK
Laura Taylor, Head of Advocacy, Christian Aid
Margaret Batty, Director of Policy and Campaign, WaterAid
Matthew Frost, Chief Executive, Tearfund
Robert Barrington, Executive Director, Transparency International UK