International development agency Oxfam Australia has urged the Coalition to drop its reported proposal to cut $373m in overseas aid to Africa.
Oxfam Australia Executive Director Andrew Hewett said, “With less than five years until the deadline for achieving the Millennium Development Goals, now is the time to intensify Australia’s efforts to combat extreme poverty, not walk away from the promises that have been made.
“The Coalition went to the last election with the promise to the Australian public that they would increase the budget in line with Australia’s bipartisan commitment towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals by 2015.
“Proposing substantial cuts in aid to Africa would seriously bring that into question and would have a devastating impact on planned and vital development work based on Australia’s forward commitments.
“Almost half of child deaths under five in the world today occur in the sub-Sahara Region as do 57 per cent of the world’s maternal deaths. This is a region that needs more help not less,” Mr Hewett said.
For more media information, or to interview Andrew Hewett, please contact John Lindsay, Oxfam Australia Tel 03 9289 9413 or mob: 0425 701801 email: email@example.com