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ODA: Aid to the Needed

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The “Quezon City Declaration” is finalised after the forum “Building an Asian Peoples’ Agenda on Aid: Conference on Official Development Assistance (ODA) in Asia” held in July 2007 in Quezon City, Philippines. The declaration calls upon donors of ODA to “Put people at the center of ODA processes.”
The forum, “Building an Asian Peoples’ Agenda on Aid: Conference on Official Development Assistance (ODA) in Asia,” ended with a declaration saying, “Put people at the center of ODA processes.” 82 representatives from 69 organisations participated at the conference, held in Quezon City, Philippines, from 25 to 27 July 2007.

ODA is a fund for development and humanitarian assistance by donor countries, multilateral institutions and Development Assistance Committee (DAC) of Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). The declaration titled as Quezon City Declaration states, “We are still home to an estimated 700 million people who barely survive on US$1 a day,” while ODA “is not going to the countries and the sectors which need it most.”

The declaration calls on donors and national governments to ensure that “human rights standards and social development principles” guide the whole process of how ODA is used. It also says that human rights NGOs are to be included in related decision-making process.

To national governments in Asia, the declaration urges to ensure that “the poor and socially excluded” participate to the formulation and implementation of ODA programs. To conduct debt and ODA audits in consultation with civil society and third party auditors, and to use the principles of “gender justice and women’s empowerment” to measure the impact of ODA are among other items addressed to the governments.

The three-day regional conference consisted of case presentations on ODA effectiveness, both by donor and recipient countries. Its workshops focused on the impact of ODA in different fields, from environment to human rights.

The forum was organised by The Global Call to Action against Poverty-Asia (GCAP) and ODA Watch-Philippines. FORUM-ASIA sponsored the meeting with other organisations. Anselmo Lee, Executive Director of FORUM-ASIA, attended the meeting and made a presentation on “ODA and Human Rights.”

To view the whole declaration, please visit: