Former prime minister David Cameron has criticised Boris Johnson’s decision to merge the Department for International Development with the Foreign & Commonwealth Office.
Johnson announced the creation of a new ‘super department’ on Tuesday, folding overseas aid into the foreign office. The new department will be known as the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office.
Responding to the news on Twitter, Cameron said “the decision to merge the departments is a mistake”. The former PM said he agreed with Johnson that more could be done to coordinate between the two departments but that he though the merger “will mean less expertise, less voice for development at the top table and ultimately less respect for the UK overseas.”
The Prime Minister is right to maintain the commitment to 0.7 – it saves lives, promotes a safer world and builds British influence. But the decision to merge the departments is a mistake. 1/2— David Cameron (@David_Cameron) June 16, 2020
Labour leader Keir Starmer said the prime minister was making the announcement to “deflect” from other issues, such as coronavirus and free school meals for children. Starmer said: “We should see this statement for what it is, the tactics of pure distraction.”