Man sues UK over aid funding 'rights abuse'

2014-04-01 09:38

(Shutterstock)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Addis Ababa - An Ethiopian man is suing Britain's government alleging its aid money has funded human rights abuses, a move condemned by Ethiopia on Monday as "absolutely outrageous".

The man, known only as Mr O, accuses Britain's Department for International Development (DFID) of financially supporting a "villagisation" scheme in western Ethiopia, a government-led plan to settle pastoralists in sedentary communities.

The case - itself funded by British legal aid - has been brought before London's High Court, but no trial date has yet been set.

"Mr O claims he suffered severe abuse and had to flee his home," in western Ethiopia's Gambella region under the villagisation programme, his British lawyers Leigh Day said in a statement.

Under the scheme, the government plans to settle 1.5 million people across the country, which it says will improve access to key services such as education and healthcare.

Ethiopian government spokesperson Getachew Reda dismissed the allegations of abuse, saying it was "absolutely outrageous because it doesn't have any factual basis".

Devastating and tragic impact

But Mr O claims he was forced to leave his home and move to a village with no farmland, schools or clinics before he was finally arrested and beaten by the army.

His lawyer Rosa Curling claimed the villagisation programme has had a "devastating and tragic impact", warning that a misuse of aid money can "devastatingly undermine the very aims it is trying to achieve."

DFID denied the charges, saying in a statement that "it is wrong to suggest that British development money is used to force people from their homes".

Britain, one of Ethiopia's largest donors, plans to spend an average of $550m per year until 2015, including direct budgetary support to the government.

About 30% of the Ethiopia's budget comes from donor money, crucial in one of the world's poorest countries, where the majority of the 91 million people earn less than two dollars a day, according to the World Bank.

Human Rights Watch has accused Ethiopia of forcibly displacing thousands of people under the villagisation scheme.
Read more on:    uk  |  ethiopia  |  east africa
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
1 comment
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
SPONSORED CONTENT
When is a mountain more than just a mountain? 2014-12-18 07:26

When it’s an adventure! A group of Old Mutual employees found out how much is enough courage, endurance and camaraderie to take on Africa's highest peak.

/News
 

Joburg hot spots for cocktails, craft beer, tapas and wine!

It’s the season to be jolly – so we’ve rounded up some new Joburg hot spots!

 
 

I love summer.24

The craziest deaths of 2014
How to make this a sensual, sexy summer!
This is what South Africans Googled in 2014!
This hilarious song is your new holiday anthem

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

2DAYS ONLY – 30% off Appliances

Coffee makers, blenders, fans, juicers and more. T&Cs apply. Shop now!

2 DAYS ONLY – 40% off books

Get 40% off when you buy 2 books. For two days only! T&Cs apply. Buy now!

Up to 50% off on outdoor gear

Save on chairs, blankets, cooler bags, umbrellas and more. Shop now!

Save on Samsung

Cameras, mobile phones, TVs, Tablets and more. While stocks last. Shop now!

Grand Theft Auto 5

Now available on PS4, Xbox One and PC from R649. Buy now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

You may be emotionally defensive or reserved today. You need to step up today as there may be extra responsibilities to deal with....read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.