SLRCS joins rest of the world to celebrate World Red Cross and Red Cresent Day

Today, 8 May 2018

The Sierra Leone Red Cross (SLRCS) joins the rest of the world in celebrating the World Red Cross and Red Crescent Day.
Albeit this year’s theme: “Smile”, SLRCS is not smiling at the way law enforcement agencies are not enforcing penalties resulting from the misuse of the SLRCS emblem even though Parliament had reviewed the SLRC Act which calls for the protection of the emblem.
“Our Act was reviewed in 2012 which gives strength to the national society emblem to be protected… however, there are people who are still misusing it so we are looking forward to the government enforce the protection of the Red Cross emblem. It is a national emblem that bears the name of the Sierra Leone Red Cross Society and it is now part of our laws that whosoever violates it should be imprisoned for 25 years or pay a fine not less than Le 50 million,” said Patrick Massaquoi SLRCS Communication Coordinator and Security Focal Point.
In Britain, a trucker, Mike Taylor, was told he faced legal action unless he removed the British Red Cross emblem from his lorry. “The Newport aid worker is committing a crime by using the Red Cross emblem without authorization,” said the British Red Cross.
In 2008, Human Rights calls on the Colombian government to investigate the misuse of the Red Cross emblem by security forces during the rescue of several hostages being held by guerrillas.
“We are neither law enforcement officials nor lawyers that is why we are looking to the government to protect us. We are also looking forward to the government giving us our subventions. This would give us the logistical strength in order to respond anywhere and anytime when disaster breaks,” Massaquoi emphasized.
Sierra Leone Police Head of Media, ASP Ibrahim Samura, said he is not aware of any arrests regarding the misuse of the SLRCS emblem. “Arrest can only be made if misuse of the emblem is reported to the police…” he said.
Red Cross Day is an international event, which is celebrated to commemorate the seven fundamental principles of the international cross and Red Cross crescent movement.
The motive of celebrating the Red Cross day is to reduce and terminate the suffering situation among people and raises their dignity to the next level. It isn’t only about growing the dignity of an individual but it is also about protecting the lives of the people from natural disasters situations like earthquakes, floods, storms, etc. It is celebrated worldwide by the red cross organizations to assist people keeping in mind the fundamental principles of the red cross organization such as Independence, Humanity, Impartiality, neutrality, universality, unity and voluntary.
By Ophaniel Gooding
Tuesday, May 08, 2018.