NGOs Write to Oireachtas Members to ACT NOW on Global Poverty

Monday, 28 Jun 2010

Dóchas, the umbrella organisations of 45 overseas aid organisations, has written to all members of the Oireachtas, to urge them to ACT NOW on overseas aid.

In their message, the NGOs remind law-makers that Ireland signed up to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) ten years ago, and that this September, Ireland’s Taoiseach will join other world leaders in a UN review of progress achieved, and promises made.

The NGOs call on the Government to urgently prepare for the Summit by bringing forward a concrete, time-bound action plan – an MDG breakthrough plan.

“Ireland has an opportunity in the coming weeks to push for an ambitious action plan to deliver the Millennium Development Goals to tackle global poverty. The government should publish its action plan showing how it will deliver on its aid promise over the next five years,”
said Hans Zomer, Director of Dóchas and Chairperson of the campaign.

The NGOs argue that, as a small, open economy, Ireland depends on its global reputation as a reliable partner and as a country that keeps its promises. They say that this year is our opportunity to cement that reputation.

"Our leaders made - and reiterated - a promise to the world's poorest people, that they will not stand idly by when so many people die needlessly of preventable diseases and hunger. Now is the time to deliver on those promises,”
said Justin Kilcullen, Director of Trócaire and President of the EU-wide NGO umbrella organisation CONCORD.

ENDS
 

Contacts:

Hans Zomer, Director, Dóchas, and campaign Chairperson. tel. 085 728 3258 / 01 405 3801

Notes for the Editor:

  • About the aid promises:
    • At the UN Millennium Summit in 2000, then Taoiseach Bertie Ahern committed Ireland to reaching the UN target for spending 0.7% of our GNP on overseas aid by 2007. 
    • In 2005, the target date was revised to 2012. The government set interim targets “against which our progress towards the target can be measured”.  
    • The Government announced in December 2009 that it had postponed the 0.7% target yet again, this time until 2015.
    • Ireland's aid budget currently stands at €671m. 
  • More information about the upcoming UN MDG Summit is available via http://www.un.org/en/mdg/summit2010/ 
  • For further information about the "Act Now on 2015" campaign, visit www.actnow2015.ie.
  • The "Act Now on 2015" campaign is coordinated by Dóchas, an umbrella group of 45 Irish Development NGOs.

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