The 14 Words

Saturday, 30 June 2012

The African village where EVERY family is getting £7,500 from the British taxpayer


This UN-backed Millennium Village project — to which Britain is now contributing millions of pounds for the first time — began in 2004 and encompasses half a million Africans.

It is designed to prove that targeted aid can lift such places out of poverty in just five years. But the scheme is facing mounting accusations that it is a waste of money, and is doing less to help rural Africans than it claims.

According to the project’s documents, the business plan reveals ‘total direct costs’ are expected to be £17.2 million and that the goal is ‘substantial poverty reduction’ for up to 2,250 households. This means spending more than an astonishing £7,500 per household. To put this in perspective, this is 34 times the average annual income of households in the region.

The British Government — desperate to find ways to spend its soaring aid budgets — is handing over £11.5 million to this vainglorious venture. Despite the austerity weighing on British families at home, spending on foreign aid — currently £8.8 billion a year — is rising by more than one-third under the Coalition.



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