Sunday, June 27, 2010

G8 summit focuses on accountability, but where is it?

Christian Science Monitor (US)
26 June 2010

As the G8 countries this weekend emphasized the need for more accountability on their aid pledges, relief groups decried the fact that many pledges at previous G8 summits have gone unmet.

TORONTO - It is no small irony that Canada has focused on G8 accountability as a priority in this past weekend's summit.

Nor that it was a Canadian, the iconic internationalist Lester B. Pearson, who came up with the 0.7 percent pledge - later adopted by the United Nations General Assembly - that rich countries would give 0.7 percent of their Gross National Product in development aid to the world's poorest.

Today, Canada's percentage of GNP going to aid is less than half the standard set by Mr. Pearson, and as the Group of Eight nations wrapped up their meeting in Huntsville, Ontario yesterday, many aid advocates questioned not only the Canadian hosts' commitment to development, but the entire group's very credibility.

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