To the editor:
I think one must be absolutely cynical or completely daft to take as partners in helping the poor of the Third World the Canadian large corporations and mining companies exploiting their resources.
Yet it is the approach taken by Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s government by recently amalgamating Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) under the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development.
Whether cynical or daft, the Harper government is diverting Canadian development assistance for the poor to companies whose interests are opposite – in principle and practice – to the well-being of these poor people. There are numerous well-known evidence and testimonies in this regard.
Mr. Harper knows the role played by multinationals in the impoverishment of several third-world countries. He is making another dangerous right turn in favour of the very rich, whose first victims, in the truest sense, will be the poorest of the world.
I hope pressures from the public, from opposition parties and from members of their own party will force Harper Conservatives to change their mind about CIDA and adopt a much more humane approach towards the poorest.
Assistance to the poor is fragile and must go to the poor – not to large corporations.