These comments come after the Daily Mail newspaper yesterday reported that £300 million of British taxpayers' money is being handed out to Pakistanis on pre-loaded cash cards as part of a scheme critics say is rife with corruption. That's not all. The UK is planning to increase foreign aid to Pakistan by a further £105 million, when the latter spent as much as £4 billion to buy eight new submarines. All this while there is a crisis in social care in Britain itself.
"Surely common sense tells us that giving cash handouts in a country that has its own nuclear weapons and space programmes is simply wrong. Our own UK taxpayers are facing more and more cuts on a daily basis whilst we are providing benefits to the citizens of Pakistan," the UK Independent Party's (UKIP) Lisa Duffy was quoted as saying by the Belfast Telegraph.
One MP said taxpayer-funded cash handouts to people in Pakistan is akin to "exporting the dole".
The dole in Britain is a small sum of money paid by the government to the unemployed, so there's no doubt the MP's comment was not meant to a compliment. MP Nigel Evans said warned that cash transfers were "clearly open to fraud"."Normally this sort of aid is only given in a crisis or emergency when it is the only way to give help. It only should be a temporary measure, but it seems like we're exporting the dole to Pakistan, which is clearly not a clever idea," said Evans, who's also a member of the member of the International Development Select Committee.
UK's Prime Minister Theresa May defended the scheme it supports in Pakistan - the Benazir Income Support Programme - saying it helps the poorest families there, Belfast Telegraph. But a Daily Mail investigation found Pakistani families withdrawing money with cashpoint cards they obtained by actually paying kickbacks to officials.