International Development Secretary Penny Mordaunt spoke passionately about MP Jo Cox yesterday as she paid tribute to her legacy as a humanitarian ahead of International Women’s Day.
In an opinion piece published in The Times’ Red Box today, Ms Mordaunt wrote about their relationship when Jo was an opposition back bencher and she was Minister of State for the Armed Forces and how they tried to build a coalition across the house on Syria.
Her words follow the launch yesterday of the Jo Cox Memorial Grants, which will be given to grassroots organisations that work on issues that were close to her heart.
There was support for the announcement across Parliament and Labour MP Alison McGovern wrote a piece for the Guardian yesterday in which she praised DFID’s work and thanked Penny Mordaunt for setting up the grants.
Conservative MP Tom Tugendhat wrote in the Huffington Post that as an aid worker and as a Member of Parliament, Jo campaigned passionately for two issues: the power of women to drive political change, and how identity-based violence including war crimes can be prevented if global leaders support and listen to those working on the ground.
Press Association, Evening Standard, Yorkshire Post, Reuters, BBC Radio 5 Live, Politico’s Playbook and The I all reported on UK aid being given to help powerless women in poor countries build better lives in memory of Jo Cox. The announcement was also covered on BBC2's Daily Politics programme.
The issue was raised in Parliament yesterday when the Prime Minister answered a question during Prime Minister’s Questions welcoming the UK aid contribution of up to £10million grants to support two causes close to Jo’s heart - identity based violence and boosting social economic power of women and girls. The Prime Minister said Jo was a dedicated humanitarian, who fought for equality and said it is right for the government and the country to get women’s voices heard.
A video of Jo’s sister Kim Leadbeater has been posted on DFID’s social media channels in which she talks about Jo’s humanitarian work around the world in places like Darfur and the Congo.