Funding and Targets for Poorest of the Poor is Strong First Move by Accountability Commission Say Leading Aid Agencies and Human Rights Advocates
OTTAWA, Ontario, January 26, 2011 - Prime Minister Harper's announcement today of additional funding and outcome targets for Bangladesh, Ethiopia and Mozambique is right on track for reducing child and maternal deaths. Making this kind of commitment and ensuring that these funds that go directly to national governments are accounted for and deliver results in lives saved is exactly what this WHO Commission on Information and Accountability was created for.
Last year saw groundbreaking promises made to improve the health of women and children around the world. However, promises alone are not enough. It is critical that this commission establish an objective and transparent mechanism for the international community to make sure that the maternal, newborn and child health resources are getting to the world's poor. There must also be a commitment to equity as systems for checks and balances are designed.
Our agencies call on the Co-Chairs and the Commissioners to ensure that information leads to action. Key pieces of information, like birth and death statistics, must be collected and shared if we are to know where to put our collective efforts and know if they are working. But accountability is about more than monitoring. Monitoring must include a review and remedy to ensure that promises are kept and effective programs are delivered on the ground.
Accountability of INGOs is equally important. INGO members of our coalition have already committed to working together as Canadian agencies to align and coordinate our tracking and reporting and have independent evaluations of our efforts.
If this Commission is successful, the international community will be able to show better health and lives saved to leverage the tens of billions still needed every year to keep our promise to the world's poor. This is an important step to achieving the Millennium Development Goals on health by 2015 – an effort that will be secured through political will, a drive to action, and fueled by a global community that values and keeps its commitments to increasing aid as a critical part of the solution.