Yesterday the Department for International Development (DFID) released the latest update on progress against the targets in their ‘structural reform plan’ - a strategy document setting out the key elements that the Department must deliver on over the next few years. We were very concerned to see that the update shows a new delay in the Government’s plans to enshrine 0.7% of GNI to aid in law; the deadline for DFID to deliver on its commitment to do so has now been postponed to early 2015. The news that this legislation may be delayed by almost three more years follows a failure to include it in last month’s Queen’s Speech.
See RESULTS’s press release on yesterday’s announcement here. Continue reading
This week saw the conclusion of one of the longest legislative sessions in living memory May 2010 to May 2012. 53 Acts of Parliament were passed in the session including the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act, Welfare Reform Act and Health and Social Care Acts, to name but a few lengthy pieces of legislation that attracted significant scrutiny, debate and on some occasions revolt.
Parliament is now in Prorogation – the formal name given to the period between the end of a session of Parliament and the State Opening of Parliament.
The State Opening, taking place on Wednesday 9th May, is the main ceremonial event and the most colourful event of the parliamentary calendar, attracting large crowds. It is also the most important, because it brings together the three elements of the legislature (the House of Commons, the House of Lords and The Queen). The ceremony therefore represents the Crown in Parliament (A brief guide on the state opening from the BBC can be viewed here).
At the State Opening of Parliament today, the Queen confirmed the government’s intention to spend 0.7% of GNI on official development assistance (ODA) every year from 2013.
The 0.7% commitment was not part of the list of bills that the new government hopes to achieve over the next 18 months but the fact that it was included in the Queen’s Speech is a clear indication of the new coalition government’s intentions to put it into law through other means in the future. Continue reading