Gordon's plan to educate third world

GORDON Brown's laudable plan to spend £8.5bn in overseas aid for education in Africa and Asia is all part of the Chancellor's agenda to portray himself as an international statesman as he patiently waits to claim what he believes is his right - the leadership of the Labour Party and the premiership.

GORDON Brown's laudable plan to spend £8.5bn in overseas aid for education in Africa and Asia is all part of the Chancellor's agenda to portray himself as an international statesman as he patiently waits to claim what he believes is his right - the leadership of the Labour Party and the premiership.

Mr Brown headed off to Mozambique yesterday to join former South African President Nelson Mandela in urging African countries to submit more ambitious education plans.

The £8.5bn from UK taxpayers is over a 10 year period ad Mr Brown is clearly hoping to shame other G8 member states to dig deep to make poverty history and give the kids of poor African and Asian nations the same chance in life as those from the affluent west.

An estimated £57bn will be needed by 2015 to make education free - it's little realised here that parents in the third world have to pay to send their children to school and for the vast majority who can't afford to even a modest sum, their children languish at home without having any educational opportunities.


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Meanwhile, as I recently forecast, Alan Milburn is gearing up to challenge the Chancellor for the Labour leadership when Tony Blair sets his departure date.

A Blairite to his fingertips, Mr Milburn is leading the “stop Gordon” brigade. Expect a bloody battle for the succession which could see the New Labour project come apart as fratricidal infighting destroys the uneasy truce of the past 12 years when Labour's warring tribes realised the only way to gain power again was to be nice to easy other.

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FAR be it more me to ever criticise a local authority for wasting money, but the gallons of paint used by Ipswich borough council marking out cycle lanes in Colchester Road for the three people a fortnight who use them seems a bit excessive.

If the council really wants to encourage cycling, especially children heading to Northgate high school, then why not direct them off the main road and onto the parallel service roads? It seems to me to be a far safer option, but then, I'm no expert -just someone who wants to see common sense prevail.

As for spending money, if Ipswich does have a few bob floating about, it ought to be publicising through more prominent signing the fact that cars can now use the bus lanes off peak in London Road and St Helen's Street. Motorist who do know about the change are subjected to angry honks and black looks for daring to drive up bus lanes and overtaking on the inside the queuing traffic in the other lane.

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