An outraged audience member was enraged about the commitment to spending 0.7 per cent of GDP on foreign aid when policemen, firemen and care workers are under funded.
Jonathan Bartley, the co-leader of the Green Party, said: “I am absolutely in favour of £13billion in foreign aid. We would put it up. I am proud of it and want to raise it to one per cent.
“I am ashamed of our country when we spend 40 per cent of GDP on ourselves, the fifth biggest economy in the world. Yet we only spend 0.7 per cent on the rest of the world when there are famines and poverty.”
The UK’s bloated annual foreign aid budget is set to soar by an extra £1billion over the next four years, financial experts revealed last week.
The forecast from the Institute for Fiscal Studies estimated that nearly £15billion of UK taxpayers’ money will be given away in overseas every year by 2021.
Charles Moore, Margaret Thatcher’s biographer, was in full agreement that the policy should be scrapped.
He said: “You should not have a law that says it has got to be X per cent. They do not know how to spend it and they are actually not allowed to spend it on things that are a benefit to the UK.
“I have seen how the system works, all the money is handed over to Governments in places like Iraq and Afghanistan and the people whose fingers are nearest to it keep it. That is how it works in those places.”
The Tory manifesto outlined plans for the armed force to get a share of foreign aid money under reforms planned by defence ministers. If approved troops could be used to deliver food and medicine overseas.
Priti Patel, the Secretary of State for International Development, said: “We have seen plenty of cases over the years where aid has not gone to the right places.
“It is my job to track the money and ensure we spend it in our national interests. Whether it is on diseases, famine or to keep ourselves safe here.
“We want to work with like minded countries to reform the OECD rules because we can’t spend money on getting military support in to deliver aid in humanitarian situations. I know of aid workers have been killed delivering food relief in unstable parts of the world.
“This allows Britain to stand tall in the world post-Brexit and gives us great influence with other countries. Our manifesto shows the Conservatives will take the money we currently give to the EU and spend it in the UK.”