In DfID questions this week, International Development Secretary Priti Patel pledged to review overseas aid, with Minister James Wharton confirming that concerns made regarding aid spending will “be looked into in detail” with any issues arising “addressed and tackled” – including the issue of Palestinian Authority salaries going to convicted terrorists.
The comments came in response to a question from CFI Parliamentary Chairman Rt. Hon. Sir Eric Pickles MP, who asked: “As part of getting proper value, would it not make sense to reward those organisations that are working for peace within the Middle East rather than to have money going to those who seek to encourage terrorism?”
Rt. Hon. Priti Patel MP replied: “My right honourable Friend raises important points. As I have said a number of times today, DFID is focused on value for money, but as he has rightly pointed out, we will work with organisations in the right way to make sure that we are delivering the right outcomes that meet our Government priorities – both peace and stability, as well as humanitarian causes.
DUP MP Nigel Dodds asked: “There are grave concerns about the Palestinian Authority continuing to pay reward payments to convicted terrorists and the possible misappropriation of international aid from the UK to the Palestinian Authority. Will the Minister look carefully at that once again in light of the grave concerns that are being expressed?”
International Development Minister James Wharton said: “It is vital that the money that UK taxpayers spend on aid is spent on the right things and the right priorities. Where concerns are raised, they will of course be looked into in detail. If there are issues found to be arising, they will be addressed and tackled”.
He underlined: “The UK also believes in its commitment to helping the poorest in the world. Every penny spent on the purposes for which it is intended is a penny well spent. Any penny that goes missing is a life that may go unsaved”.