|Previous Section||Index||Home Page|
Pete Wishart: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how many Freedom of Information Act 2000 requests have been answered by the Department; and in how many cases (a) information was wholly exempted, (b) information was partly exempted and (c) the requests were answered in full. 
Mr. Hain: The Department for Constitutional Affairs publishes quarterly updates in relation to departmental performance under FOI, including information on both the volume and outcomes of requests. These reports cover all Departments of State, including the Wales Office.
The first of these updates, covering the period January to March, was published on 23 June 2005 and can be found on both the DCA website at http://www.foi.gov.uk/statsjan-mar05.htm and in the House Library. The next bulletin is due in the autumn of this year. An annual report is also to be published in early 2006.
|Aberavon||Briton Ferry Special School|
|Alyn and Deeside||Ysgol Belmont|
|Alyn and Deeside||Ysgol Y Bryn|
|Blaenau Gwent||Pen-Y-Cwm Special School|
|Brecon and Radnorshire||Ysgol Penmaes|
|Bridgend||Ysgol Bryn Castell|
|Caernarfon||Ysgol Hafod Lon|
|Caerphilly||Trinity Fields Special School|
|Cardiff Central||The Hollies Special School|
|Cardiff North||The Court Special School|
|Cardiff North||Meadowbank Special School|
|Cardiff South and Penarth||Ashgrove School|
|Cardiff South and Penarth||Ysgol Erw'r Delyn|
|Cardiff West||Riverbank Special School|
|Cardiff West||Woodlands High School|
|Cardiff Central||Ty Gwyn Special School|
|Cardiff North||Greenhill Special School|
|Conwy||Ysgol Y Gogarth|
|Cynon Valley||Maesgwyn Special School|
|Cynon Valley||Park Lane Special School|
|Llanelli||Heol Goffa Special School|
|Merthyr Tydfil and Rhymney||Greenfield Special School|
|Monmouth||Mounton House Special School|
|Neath||Ysgol Hendre Special School|
|Newport West||Maes Ebbw School|
|Pontypridd||Ysgol Ty Coch|
|Preseli Pembrokeshire||Portfield Special School|
|Preseli Pembrokeshire||Ysgol Rhydygors|
|Rhondda||Rhondda Special School|
|Swansea East||Penybryn Senior Special School|
|Swansea West||Ysgol Crug Glas|
|Vale of Clwyd||Ysgol Tir Morfa|
|Vale of Clwyd||Ysgol Plas Brondyffryn|
|Vale of Glamorgan||Ysgol Maes Dyfan|
|Wrexham||St Christopher's School|
|Ynys Mon||Ysgol Bont|
In accordance with the Welsh Language Act 1993, the Wales Office has a Welsh Language Scheme. Under the terms of the scheme, the switchboard serving our Cardiff office answers with a bilingual greeting. If the caller wishes to speak Welsh, the operator will try to connect the call to a Welsh speaker who can deal with the inquiry. If no Welsh speaker is available and able to deal with the inquiry, the caller will be given the choice of a Welsh speaker ringing back, or continuing the call in English. If the caller rings on one of our direct lines but the person taking the call cannot speak Welsh, he or she will try to transfer it to a suitable Welsh speaking colleague. Again, if no-one is available, the caller will be given the choice of a Welsh speaker calling back, or continuing the call in English. There might be times when there is no Welsh speaker available who can answer the query in full, especially if it is complex or specialised. In these cases, the caller will be given the option of discussing the matter in English or writing to us in Welshin which case, they would receive a written reply in Welsh. The switchboard serving our London headquarters may not have Welsh speaking staff. If they receive a call from someone wishing to speak Welsh, the operator will explain that he or she cannot speak Welsh but will offer to try to connect the caller to a Welsh speaker within the department. If none of our Welsh speakers was available, the operator would explain that this was so and offer the caller the option of continuing the conversation in English, or of leaving their details so that a Welsh speaker could ring back later. We have no facilities for dealing with telephone inquiries in Scots Gaelic or Irish Gaelic.
10 Oct 2005 : Column 49W
Hilary Benn: At the Tokyo Conference in 2002, the UK pledged £200 million over five years in development assistance to Afghanistan. At the Berlin Conference in March 2004 this pledge was increased to a total of £500 million over the same time period; by mid-2005, £360 million of this had been spent.
During President Karzai's recent visit to the UK (July 2005), DFID committed to provide £200 million to the Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund between 2005 and 2008. This fund supports the operating costs of the Government. The UK is the largest contributor to this fund. DFID has also agreed to begin planning with the Government of Afghanistan to draw up a long-term development partnership between the two Governments.
Andrew George: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how much (a) financial, (b) material, (c) personnel and (d) other aid the UK Government (i) pledged, (ii) committed and (iii) delivered to Afghanistan following the drought in 2000. 
Following the South Asia drought of 2000, DFID committed £3.53 million specifically to Afghanistan. Of this, £3.51 million has been fully utilised. This included: £2.2 million to the World Food Programme (WFP) to provide food assistance; £0.9 million to the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies through the British Red Cross Society; £0.2 million to the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) for emergency relief for internally displaced persons; £0.1 million to the United Nations Office for the Co-ordination of Humanitarian Affairs to provide emergency shelter for people displaced by the drought and conflict; and £0.4 million to the WFP to provide food assistance to over 60,000 refugees in Pakistan who had arrived from Afghanistan. In addition, DFID provided regional assistance including £2 million to the WFP for of which £1.25 million was allocated to Afghanistan.
10 Oct 2005 : Column 50W
DFID also provided £3 million to the Afghan Government's drought appeal in September 2004 to provide drinking water to populations most in need; to rehabilitate water sources such as karezes (surface catchments) and shallow wells; and to target food distributions to the rural vulnerable in the most severely affected districts.
Mr. Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what mechanisms he plans to put in place to ensure aid agreed at the G8 Summit directly benefits the African people. 
Hilary Benn: The G8 agreed that additional resources will be focused on low income countries which are committed to growth and poverty reduction, to democratic, accountable and transparent Government and to sound financial management. Where this is the case, it should be up to the country concerned to decide how best to use resources to accelerate progress towards the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), which are focused on reducing poverty, improving people's access to education, health, water and sanitation.
The G8 agreed on the importance of an effective monitoring mechanism to track progress and to help ensure delivery on the ground. Prime accountability is from each Government to its own citizens and Parliaments. At country level, mechanisms for monitoring and review will be strengthened. Internationally, the G8 agreed to strengthen the Africa Partnership Forum (APF) so that it can monitor progress effectively. This will be done on the basis of a joint action plan, which we hope will be agreed at the next meeting of the APF in April 2006.
|Next Section||Index||Home Page|