|Previous Section||Index||Home Page|
Hilary Benn: During my visit I met President Kabila, Prime Minister Gizenga and others. I expressed deep concern about the recent fighting in Kinshasa and Bas Congo: Congolese politicians need to embrace democracy, not confrontation and violence. I pressed for renewed commitment to democracy, progress on security sector reform and enforcement of the moratorium on new logging concessions.
At Panzi hospital in Eastern DRC, I met rape victims aged just 4 and 7. I was moved by the hospital staffs determination to make a difference. DFIDs task is to support such efforts to help poor people and sustain peace in DRC.
8. Mrs. Dorries: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development if he will make a statement on his Departments efforts to promote clean water and sanitation in the developing world. 
13. Daniel Kawczynski: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what steps his Department is taking to promote clean water and sanitation in the developing world; and if he will make a statement. 
Hilary Benn: We will double our expenditure on water and sanitation in Africawhere the Millennium Development Goal targets are most off-trackto £95 million a year by 2007-08, and then double it again to £200 million a year by 2010-11.
Last November, I published a global call to action on water and sanitation. We need both developing country Governments and donors to do more, we need to invest more and to ensure this money is spent effectively, and we need to put the best structures in place to make all of this happen.
Nigeria ranks below the average for sub-Saharan Africa in the UNs Human Development Index. In Northern Nigeria, high maternal mortality,
low levels of immunisation, and gender inequality mean human development indicators are among the worlds worst, outside conflict zones. While Nigeria has not seen a widespread humanitarian crisis in recent years, there are regional instances of severe human suffering. A nutritional crisis in mid-2005 in several Northern states led Medicins Sans Frontieres to treat over 15,000 severely malnourished children. Meanwhile, oil spills in the Niger Delta have affected the environment and local livelihoods in that region.
Recent assessment showed malnutrition just below emergency line and fairly stable mortality figures. This success however is dependent on continued humanitarian assistance which continues to be under threat both from violence and from bureaucratic impediments imposed by the Government of Sudan. Aid delivery remains suspended or severely curtailed in many areas of Darfur leaving large numbers of people with no access to critical humanitarian assistance.
Recent assessments report malnutrition just below emergency threshold and fairly stable mortality figures. However this success is dependent on the provision of ongoing humanitarian assistance which continues to be under threat both from insecurity and from bureaucratic impediments imposed by the Government of Sudan. Aid deliveries remain suspended or severely curtailed in many areas of Darfur leaving many without access to critical humanitarian assistance.
12. Kerry McCarthy: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what discussions he has had with (a) the World Bank and (b) other multilateral institutions on the activities of vulture funds in developing countries. 
The actions of vulture funds are deplorable. They cannot be allowed to continue to profit from poor countries. The UK is working with the World Bank to ensure that countries can buy back their commercial debts at a considerable discount through the Debt Reduction Facility. We are encouraging the World Bank and IMF to strengthen their support for debt management capacity building in developing countries. The UK is also supporting the African Development Banks proposal to set up a
legal assistance facility to help countries facing lawsuits access legal advice. In addition, we will seek to develop a voluntary code of conduct for commercial creditors.
Mr. Thomas: DFID is primarily working with the Inter-American Development Bank (IADB) and World Bank. We are seeking to help the poor to get better access to markets, and to make their voice heard in Government services. There are signs of improvement: between 2001 and 2005, incomes of the poorest 10 per cent. of people in Brazil rose eight times faster than incomes of the top 10 per cent. This is in part because of the Bolsa Familia programme of cash transfers that the banks and DFID have been supporting.
Hilary Benn: The UN has declared Somalia one of the most serious humanitarian crises in the world. Killings, woundings, displacement, destruction of homes, and theft of property, especially due to the conflict in Mogadishu, has added to mounting levels of starvation and epidemic disease especially in southern and central Somalia. More people were displaced in Somalia in the past month than in any other conflict in the world. Continuing insecurity, and deliberate harassment and obstruction by all parties is seriously impeding relief efforts. Against a UN appeal of $262 million DFID has committed over £3.6 million to humanitarian activities in 2007, and is considering further support.
Anne Main: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government if she will revise paragraphs 29 to 31 of Planning Policy Guidance Note 8 to allow local planning authorities to take account of concerns about the potential health effects of mobile telecommunications stations irrespective of whether the proposed station meets the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection guidelines for public exposure. 
Meg Munn: We are currently considering the need to revise Planning Policy Guidance Note 8 but have yet to make a decision on whether we will do so. If we believe there is a case for revision to the guidance, we will consult the Electronic Communications Working Group which comprises Government, industry, academic and campaign representatives.
Mr. Evennett: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many representations of (a) support and (b) objection she has received on the pending decision on the Thames Gateway Bridge. 
2,949 representations, of which 2,836 were contained in petitions, before the opening of the Public Inquiry into the proposed Bridge;
1,819 representations were made during the Inquiry; and
44 representations following the close of the Inquiry.
59 expressions of support/representations for the proposal before the opening of the Public Inquiry into the proposed Bridge;
11 representations were made during the Inquiry; and
7 written representations following the close of the Inquiry.
John McDonnell: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many fire authorities (a) have formally committed to moving to regional fire control centres, (b) are awaiting a final business case before formally deciding, (c) have formally committed not to move to regional fire control centres and (d) have agreed to join local authority controlled companies, but with caveats that they may withdraw if the full business case does not provide evidence of value for money. 
Angela E. Smith [holding answer 24 April 2007]: As yet no fire and rescue authority has been asked to commit to formally moving to a regional fire control centre although all have been asked to make preparations for doing so in accordance with the fire and rescue national framework. The business case shows that FiReControl provides good value for money and we expect every fire and rescue authority should see savings on current spend.
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many decisions of the Planning Inspectorate she has overturned since (a) 5 December 2005 and (b) 1 November 2006; and whether any of these decisions
relate to reserve sites as identified in the local development plan. 
Meg Munn: I am presuming that the right hon. Gentleman is referring to decisions where the Secretary of State has disagreed with the recommendation of a Planning Inspector. The Secretary of State does not overturn decisions taken by the Planning Inspectorate.
The issue of reserve sites for housing is not one that arises nationally. It relates to only a few areas, including the county in which the right hon. Gentlemans constituency lies. It was not an issue in any of these cases.
Some recent cases, where the Secretary of State has been minded to make a decision against Inspectors recommendations, will not be included in these statistics as a final decision has not yet been issued.
Mr. Arbuthnot: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government whether her policy on determining planning applications has altered with the publication of Planning Policy Statement 3. 
Meg Munn: Planning Policy Statement 3: Housing (PPS3) was published in November 2006 and took full effect on 1 April 2007. It is therefore the relevant national policy statement which the Secretary of State takes into account in determining planning cases which involve prospective housing development.
Mr. Arbuthnot: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many decisions of the Planning Inspectorate she overturned in each year for which records are available; and what proportion this represents of all inspectorate decisions in each year, broken down by regional planning authority. 
|Call-ins (Number)||Call-ins (Percentage)||Recovered appeals (Number)||Recovered appeals (Percentage)||Total (Number)||Total (Percentage)|
|Next Section||Index||Home Page|