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The future of DFID – an open letter to the Prime Minister

31st January 2020

The Rt. Honourable Boris Johnson MP

Prime Minister

10 Downing Street



Dear Prime Minister,

Scotland’s International Development Alliance is the membership body which represents and supports the international development sector in Scotland.

The Alliance and its members has been deeply concerned by the prospect of a merger of DFID with the FCO.  The UK’s commitment to meeting the Sustainable Development Goals will be perceived as diminished by a blurring of the distinction between the FCO’s objectives of promoting our national interests, and DFID’s of eradicating poverty.  The UK, the world’s third largest donor, is widely admired in the international community of donor nations for its commitment to development co-operation and for the quality of its aid.

As you and your Government seek to build respect internationally for ‘Global Britain’, the benefits of any cost-saving achieved by the merger could be outweighed by the loss of leadership among OECD Development Assistance Committee (DAC) nations.

The end effect would be diminishment in the contribution we make to people in developing countries to improve their and their children’s futures.  We hope you agree that would be too high a price to pay for this aspect of your plans for reorganisation in Whitehall.

With best wishes,

Jane Salmonson (CEO, Scotland’s International Development Alliance),

Gilbert Cameron (Chairperson, LVDC Scotland),

Alistair Dutton (Chief Executive, SCIAF – Scottish Catholic International Aid Fund),

Fiona Greig (CEO, Link Community Development International),

Sandra Graham (Technical Advisor, Link Community Development International),

Dr Samantha Ross (International Programme Director, Link Community Development International),

Patricia A. Bryden, Liza Hollingshead (Chief Executive Ecologia Youth Trust),

Ann Burgess (Editorial Advisor, South Sudan Medical Journal),

Alan J Laverock (Trustee, Bananabox Trust),

Dr Duncan MacLaren KCSG (former Secretary General, Caritas Internationalis, Board member of SCIAF),

Callum Henderson (Director, Comfort International; Board member Rwanda Scotland Alliance),

Olivia Giles (Chief Executive, 500 miles),

Robin Garrett (Trustee, 500 miles),

David Hope-Jones OBE (Chief Executive, Scotland Malawi Partnership),

Ian Rankin (Director, Christian Engineers in Development), Rob Wakeling (Director, Christian Engineers in Development),

Mike Beresford (Chair of Directors, Christian Engineers in Development),

Stuart Robertson (Director – Scotland, Leonard Cheshire in Scotland),

Sarah Robinson (Operations Director, Cairdeas International Palliative Care Trust),

Jo Vallis (Chair, Friends of Chitambo),

Michaela Foster Marsh (Executive director Starchild charity),

Agnes Homes (Trustee, Scotland’s International Development Alliance),

Charles Sim (Chair of the International Development Education Association of Scotland),

Amy Goodman (Sanitree Director), 

Bridget Innes (Trustee, Friends of Chitambo),

Archie Hinchcliffe (Executive Director, Cerebral Palsy Africa),

Jamie Morrison (Chief Executive, Signpost International),

Carina Macdonald,

Karen Bennett (Finance Officer, Signpost International),

Linda Todd (CEO, The Leprosy Mission Scotland)

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