Andrew Mitchell didn’t convince his MP colleagues on his reinstatement of aid to Rwanda

Rwandan president Paul Kagame and former Secretary of State for International Development Andrew Mitchell – Picture/The Times

On Thursday 8th November 2012, the former British Secretary of State for International Development Andrew Mitchell was cross examined by the UK parliament committee responsible of scrutinizing the government in that area. 

In recent months, the minister decided to suspend temporarily then reinstate aid to Rwanda. The scrutiny exercise aimed to look into the whole process. It was undertaken at the back of the report of the UN Group of Experts which was published on 21st and 27th June 2012. The document indicates strong evidence of Rwanda involvement in supporting M23 rebel group operating in Eastern Kivu.

Despite public denial from the Rwandan government for any involvement until today, the committee explained to the former Secretary of State that it had received many strong evidence of the contrary.

Andrew Mitchell was made to understand that logically, since other donor countries supporting Rwanda had not reinstated their aid allocation while waiting for the outcome of the final report of the UN experts which is expected towards the end of November, the UK government could have done the same.

Please click here to watch and listen to the hearing at the UK parliament. Overall through the whole session of cross-examination, Andrew Mitchell did not appear to convince his audience on the flawed character of his decisions to release aid to Rwanda, without clear evidence that conditions for its reinstatement had been met.


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