MUCH has been written in the local press about overseas aid – many people for or against the giving of Manx taxpayers’ money to Third World countries.
My nephew spent over a year in Uganda with a religious relief organisation and he was shocked at the misappropriation of aid money – officials driving large Mercedes cars and 4x4 vehicles all dressed in expensive suits and eating at expensive restaurants while people they were visiting were living in squalor, begging for money to be spent on improving their slum housing.
Some would say this is only one Manx perspective on the situation – absolutely not.
On Saturday, November 3, The Times newspaper carried a report that Amami Mbabazi, the Prime Minister of Uganda, had apologised to Britain and other European countries after £12 million of aid money was siphoned off into private bank accounts.
Britain, Ireland, Norway, Sweden and Denmark have suspended aid donations to Uganda, where 17 arrests have been carried out.
I would hope the Manx Government would take note and give our aid money to our home charities like Hospice, Salvation Army and Robert Owen House and many, many more who do wonderful work for the Manx public.
We, like other European countries, should take a good look where our money is going and certainly not to help crooks in Third World countries lead a lavish lifestyle – but then our brilliant Manx politicians have become so used to tipping our money down the drain they just can’t break the habit.