Finally, after a year of campaigning against the DFID-funded privatisation of Nigeria’s energy, there is the glimmer of a breakthrough in the form of two high-level Parliamentary inquiries that scrutinise this work.
If you were to judge the outcome of last week’s World Trade Organisation (WTO) summit by media reporting, you would come away with the impression that world leaders had made a major breakthrough. The WTO, which overseas global trading rules, met in Nairobi, Kenya, and attempted to break a nearly 15-year deadlock which has pitched rich nations against developing nations.
Collateral damage. Enhanced interrogation. What’s the name for those phrases or words that sound relatively innocuous but are actually covering up something that’s very violent or very bad. Here’s another one: regulatory cooperation. Cooperation is a good thing, right?
Over the last few months, attempts have been made to present COP 21, the ‘landmark’ Paris climate summit to be held in December as an opportunity to ‘save the world’. The people behind these appeals appear to believe that if only we had a big enough petition or an impressive enough march, the political elite might be persuaded to use the Paris COP to take serious action on climate change.
It is depressing that so little has changed in almost half a century. In 1968, Enoch Powell gave his infamous Rivers of Blood speech. He predicted that immigration would cause falling living standards, shortages of hospital beds and school places and spoke of the ‘privilege’ that migrants enjoyed over and above the existing population.
The news that the Department for International Development (DfID) is ploughing an additional £735m into its private sector investment arm, the CDC group, should serve as a serious wake up call for the slumbering development sector.