Nigerian Red Cross Society (NRCS) has expressed commitment to combat societal loss of morality to end the culture of violence and its attendant vices in communities in Nigeria.
The newly inducted National President of NRCS, Prince Oluyemisi Adeaga, stated this in Ibadan after a five-day induction programme held for the new executives.
Adeaga said part of the agenda of the new administration was the “catch them young” approach to training on first aid and emergency response.
“Which would engender caring for other human beings which would be targeted at pupils and students in formal and informal settings across Nigeria.
“We have 800,000 volunteers spread across the 774 local government areas in Nigeria, but for a country that has over 200 million population, the number of the volunteers is too measly.
“There are some countries that have about 15 to 20 per cent of their population as members and volunteers at the Red Cross.
“Because the more we are the better our ability to generate resilience and the high vulnerability that occurs with the outburst of health challenges occasioned by global climate change anything can happen,” Adeaga said.
He stressed the need to inculcate moral values, especially ones that are core to Red Cross principles as youths are now more into drugs and are now promoting immorality at the expense of morality.
“And, it is culminating into a high degree of criminality within our various communities.
“And, you know the implication is that criminality is breeding a high level of vulnerability within the society and it is going stem the growth of the society.
“If we are able to achieve that through education and engagement of our children in their moral upbringing.
“Because whoever knows how to care to kill, whoever knows how to rescue people from danger would not create dangerous situations,” Adeaga said.
He called for the support of government and other stakeholders in achieving the mandate and objectives of the Nigerian Red Cross especially in training many citizens in first aid and emergency response as well as donations.
Also, the Secretary-General, NRCS, Mr Abubakar Kende, said the movement has good collaboration with Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC), National Emergency Management Agency and other sister’s agencies responsible for conflict and disaster management.
“Recently, we are having collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Transportation and FRSC to train average driver and motorists in Nigeria in first aid.
“And, also provide first aid kits across board for all motorists,” he said.
Mr Bhupinder Tomar, International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), Head of Delegation for West Coast- Nigeria, Benin Republic, Togo and Ghana also commented on the development.
Tomar said communities in Nigeria were facing different types of risks whether it be climate-induced or flood, drought, conflicts or increase of violence.
“And our efforts are to increase the presence of Red Cross in the communities and work in these communities to ensure that Red Cross can respond appropriately to that risk.
“What we bring is certain amount of resources, innovation and expertise to do that and also help the leadership of the NRCS to better understand these risks.
“So that they can make right investment to see how we tackle and solve these issues,” Tomar said.
Also, the British Red Cross, Country Manager for Nigeria and Sierra-Leone, Mr Karsten Voigt said there had been long historical relationship between the two countries.
“With the independence of the country, Nigerian Red Cross was also founded.
“Our focus is to follow the strategic plan of the Nigerian Red Cross because resilience is important as well as preparedness and these are the focus of the British Red Cross as well.”
Also, the Cooperation Coordinator, the International Committee of Red Cross (ICRC), Mr Patrick Nyomgesa said the movement had been working on how to reach affected communities much faster and more efficiently.
“Mostly as a movement, we work together in solidarity and complementary to identify the challenges and see how we can work with state agencies and other non-state actors in terms of how to raise resources so that we can address issues,” Nyomgesa said.
Source: News Agency of Nigeria