Australian Government pulls plug on Clinton Foundation funding
With news that the Clinton Foundation is laying off 22 staffers due to the discontinuation of the Clinton Global Initiative, we have revealed that the Australian Government is cutting all financial ties with the Clinton Global Health Initiative.
In 2014 Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop announced that the Australian Government had committed to five years of financial support for the Clinton Health Access Initiative, the sister organisation of the Clinton Foundation. By last year however, that funding had stopped, with the Australian Government jumping ship very soon after Donald Trump’s victory in the US election.
News.com.au reported late last year that:
AUSTRALIA has finally ceased pouring millions of dollars into accounts linked to Hillary Clinton’s charities.
Which might make you wonder: Why were we donating to them in the first place?
The federal government confirmed to news.com.au it has not renewed any of its partnerships with the scandal-plagued Clinton Foundation, effectively ending 10 years of taxpayer-funded contributions worth more than $88 million.
The Clinton Foundation has a rocky past. It was described as “a slush fund”, is still at the centre of an FBI investigation and was revealed to have spent more than $50 million on travel.
Despite that, the official website for the charity shows contributions from both AUSAID and the Commonwealth of Australia, each worth between $10 million and $25 million.
News.com.au approached the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade for comment about how much was donated and why the Clinton Foundation was chosen as a recipient.
A DFAT spokeswoman said all funding is used “solely for agreed development projects” and Clinton charities have “a proven track record” in helping developing countries.
Australia jumping ship is part of a post-US election trend away from the former Secretary of State and presidential candidate’s fundraising ventures.
The news follows our petition launched last week calling on Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully to veto MFAT’s plans to give another $5.5 million of NZ Aid Money to the Clinton Health Access Initiative, an affiliate of the Clinton Foundation. The petition has attracted nearly two and half thousand signatures and can be signed at: http://www.taxpayers.org.nz/clinton_petition
NZ Aid should be going to programmes that are the most effective and efficient in achieving our aid objectives. Channelling money through entities established by international politicians is not a proven effective and efficient method of giving aid to those who most need it.
It is simply bad practice for MFAT to give Aid money to an entity so closely associated with politics and politicians. The money would be much better going straight to an organisation like the Red Cross.
The Australians have stopped - so why haven't we?