It is a mistake to subsume the Department of International Development into the Foreign Office according to an unlikely alliance including Cambridge MP Daniel Zeichner and former Prime Minister David Cameron.
Daniel Zeichner MP said: “What a dreadful decision. The Prime Minister is turning back the clock to a darker era. International development is something we are good at as a country – and it is not only the morally right thing to do, it is the economically right thing to do. This is Britain retreating into our shell and the Tories making us a diminished country. I was so proud when Gordon Brown led the world in the push to Make Poverty History. And I’m so angry with the Tories making the International Development Department history. They are wrong. ”
Mr Zeichner went on to say the department is only safe in Labour hands. It was Harold Wilson’s Labour government that introduced the precursor to Dfid in 1964. It was abolished in 1970 by the Tories, re-established by Labour in 1974, scrapped by Thatcher in 1979 and re-established by Labour in 1997.
Mr Zeichner said: “International development is only safe in Labour’s hands. I want to see Britain as a moral force for good in the world, tackling the huge issues we face of climate change, poverty and health inequalities. There is no excuse for this announcement slap bang in the middle of a global crisis. This is nasty, divisive Dominic Cummings-style politics.”