Island Rights Initiative provided support to the St Helena Government in preparing evidence to the UK Parliament’s International Development Committee Inquiry into the Definition and Administration of ODA which highlighted the unique position and needs of the St Helena.
St Helena is a small and remote island community in the South Atlantic. Its residents are British citizens and it is an internally self-governing British Overseas Territory. St Helena relies on ODA from the UK to provide access to the island and to support the functioning of the island’s administration and the provision of basic public services including health, education and social care. The definition of “reasonable assistance needs” in the context of ODA for a small British Overseas Territory island community in the 21st Century is not entirely clear.
The situation of OTs is different to other development assistance because the UK has international responsibilities for St Helena including the protection of human rights on the island. Ensuring adequate access to health care and other basic services is a fundamental part of those obligations. This is directly linked to resources and ODA.
The size and self-governing nature of St Helena mean that it requires a bespoke approach to the administration of ODA that recognises the right to self-determination and the resource constraints of the island. UK ODA is very important for the future of St Helena and the St Helena Government hope that this inquiry will provide an opportunity to discuss the most effective and appropriate ways of delivering development funding to St Helena.
The complete evidence can be found here