January 14, 2008 12:40 ET

CIDA: Minister Oda Concludes Her Visit to Peru and Colombia

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Jan. 14, 2008) - The Honourable Beverley J. Oda, Minister of International Cooperation, concluded her trip to Peru and Colombia this weekend, where she visited development projects funded by the Government of Canada, met with government officials and held discussions with non-governmental organizations. She discussed donor coordination and coherence in the future development of both countries and saw first-hand the effectiveness of Canadian contribution and the impact of the Canadian International Development Agency's projects.

"In the province of Ica, Peru, I saw the damage caused by the August 2007 earthquake and the poverty conditions in which communities in rural and remote regions are living in", said Minister Oda. "I was touched to see the difference that the Government of Canada is making in their daily lives by rebuilding schools and houses, and by offering basic services. In Colombia, I talked with displaced Afro-Colombian youth about their future. I have learned a lot about displaced people in Colombia and the challenges they face. In a small town in Colombia, I was moved by young children who have been exploited. With our help, these children are receiving vital services and protection. These are just a few examples of the tremendous difference we are making in their lives. Canadians can be very proud of the support the Government of Canada is providing to children, families and communities in need in Peru and Colombia."

Minister Oda traveled to Peru from January 6 to 9, where she visited several education, earthquake relief and democracy-building projects funded by the Government of Canada through the Canadian International Development Agency. She met with Peru's Minister of Energy and Mines and the Ombudsperson, who is responsible for promoting democracy and human rights. She also inaugurated the new Canadian Embassy chancery in Lima.

Minister Oda then traveled to Colombia from January 10 to 12, where she met with the Vice-President and Minister of Foreign Affairs. She also visited several projects funded by the Government of Canada aimed at protecting children and internally displaced people. Canada is a leading donor to child protection efforts in Colombia.

Minister Oda's visit follows Prime Minister Harper's trip to Colombia and the region in July 2007. She reaffirmed the Prime Minister's position on promoting the Canadian fundamental values of freedom, democracy, human rights and the rule of law, and Canada's commitment to deepen our relationship with the Americas. The Government of Canada is also committed to bring greater focus and effectiveness to Canada's international assistance.

For more information on and pictures of Minister Oda's visit and the Government of Canada's aid initiatives in the Americas, visit CIDA's website at:

Editors Note: A photo for this release will be available on the CP picture wire via Marketwire.

Contact Information

  • Office of the Minister of International Cooperation
    Veronique Bruneau
    Press Secretary
    Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA)
    Media Relations Office
    819-953-6534 (electronic version of document)