Every January, Bill Gates sets out his vision for a
better world and the role the Bill and Melinda
Gates Foundation can play in achieving this in an
annual letter to us all. With assets of $43.5 billion, the
foundation is the largest charitable foundation in
the world. It is arguably the most influential actor on
issues of global health and agriculture, and distributes
more aid for global health than any government.
This influence has earned the Bill and Melinda
Gates Foundation a place in the regular reporting
of aid to the global south, as compiled by the
OECD. But this has not been matched with the
corresponding accountability and scrutiny to the
public that we have in aid programmes run by
governments. At present, the foundation is obliged
to only report its high level financial figures to the US
government and its programmes are not subject to
independent or public evaluation.
Global Justice Now has a strong track record
in holding the UK government to account on
how UK aid is spent to ensure that it reaches the
people who really need it and makes a long term
difference to levels of poverty and inequality.