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Africa

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 9:23 pm on 30th March 2009.

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Photo of Christine Russell Christine Russell Labour, City of Chester 9:23 pm, 30th March 2009

That sounds like a splendid idea, and I will certainly point the Secretary of State for Health in that direction. My second suggestion would offer a very good way for us to transfer skills and knowledge to the developing world.

My final point is that the UN can and certainly should do more to co-ordinate international efforts. There is far too much fragmentation among the UN agencies, and they need a much clearer focus on improving maternal health. I have been sitting here doing some sums during the debate. It commenced at 4.15 pm, and by the time that it concludes in 30 minutes' time, 400 more women will have endured an agonising death in childbirth somewhere in Africa. That must not go on in the 21st century. As the leaders of the G20 are meeting in London, perhaps as well as considering and taking forward a concerted plan of action to tackle the global financial crisis, they should agree a concerted plan of action to make progress towards the achievement of millennium development goal No. 5.

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