Yesterday was a day for celebration. You may remember that last month, SuperBadger blogged about ‘vulture funds’, companies that buy up the debts of poor countries, and then sue in court to reclaim the full amount – diverting money that should have been spent on health and education!
Yesterday the UK became the first country in the world to legislate to stop vulture funds profiteering off the debts of the poorest countries in the world. This is fantastic news. Thank you to all of you who took action to badger Alistair Darling and George Osborne to ban the vultures – you played a vital part in this!
Last week, it looked like the Debt Relief (Developing Countries) Bill was dead. But, thanks to ongoing campaigning by the Jubilee Debt Campaign and the determination of a few MPs, the Government agreed to select this measure for the ‘wash up’, a process of passing a few laws quickly, with cross-party support, at the end of a Parliamentary session. In explaining why, Harriet Harman, Leader of the Commons, said it was because the Bill had “considerable support in the country”.
This victory should mean that we never again have to see a country as poor as Liberia or Zambia sued in a UK court on the basis of a debt which dates back to the 1970s and has been bought by a vulture fund for pennies in the pound.
Why not celebrate with a visit to the Jubilee Debt Campaign website for more reaction to the passing of the bill?
Thank you again for being part of the huge wave of support for this bill – your campaigning has helped bring justice to millions of people in countries like Uganda, Mozambique, Liberia and Zambia. Isn’t that just wonderful news?!