By OPCS Press Service-Nairobi
Prime Cabinet Secretary, Musalia Mudavadi has lauded the humanitarian work that the Red Cross and Red Crescent networks have been doing in Africa to alleviate suffering in communities.
Mudavadi said the continent recognizes global Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement networks, which have saved lives in dire situations of rescue and evacuation from war and depravity.
In Kenya, he said the Red Cross has been a key partner and made an enormous contribution to the social-economic development of the country.
“We have partnered not only in the area of emergency response, but in the wider context of linking resilience of communities to long term development. On behalf of the people of Kenya, we commend the Red Cross for always being there, and ready whenever needed,” the Prime Cabinet Secretary said.
According to Mudavadi, Kenya is still keen to continue collaborating with the rest of the Red Cross movement to achieve mutual goals and strategic objectives.
He made the remarks on Sunday when he presided over the 10th Pan-Africa conference of the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent societies at the Insurance College in Nairobi.
The conference is running under the theme ‘Renewing Investments in Africa’ with a focus on innovative approaches to financial solutions.
“Impartial, neutral humanitarian service and assistance at all times are not just words. They invoke meaning of a great humanitarian achievement. Over 160 years ago seems like yesterday, when Henry Dunant responded to a cry to attend to persons injured in war.
“With that simple act of mercy, his idea of unprejudiced and neutral humanitarian assistance birthed the great worldwide movement.
“It feels like yesterday because the objectives that inspired the founder of the Red Cross and led to formation of the Red Cross Red Crescent Movement, are still as relevant today as they were in the 19th Century,” said Mudavadi.
Through extensive network of local branches and volunteers of national societies, Mudavadi said the two have grown livelihoods to sustain communities in need throughout the world.
“The world cannot, for any moment, forget or pretend not to know, how tirelessly you work to alleviate human suffering; and build resilience of communities on behalf of and in collaboration with Governments all over the world,” he said.
Mudavadi urged Africa to continue building strong local actors who effectively address challenges facing the continent, affirming that he is a strong believer in the proper use of immense resources available in the continent both natural and human.
With its massive infrastructure, the Prime Cabinet Secretary said the Red Cross and Red Crescent work holds a special place in the annuals of the continent, saying they are always of the frontline of risk in most hostile environments, in marginalized and hard-to-reach communities to provide healthcare, food, water or blood.
Mudavadi however, regretted that the continent continues to experience recurrent manmade and natural disasters that lead to massive death, huge population displacements and movement and painful disruption of people’s livelihoods.
“More than any other organisation, I dare say, you are responsible for keeping Africa fed, treated and alive. You are an integral part of the target to enhance the resilience of communities to climate change,” he said.
With a precision of metrological warning predictability, he said Red Cross is always on the frontline of spreading awareness that despite Africa being the least contributor to global emission and by extension climate change, bears the brunt of the effects in form of extreme weather events such as heat waves, floods and droughts.
Mudavadi said climate change is not a theoretical subject but a reality of daily lives and that is why Africa held the climate summit to prepare Africa’s position for COP28.
He welcomed the fact that the three day conference will centre on deliberations of the Africa Climate Summit, particularly, speak to the Pan African initiatives which touch on scaling up climate environmental solutions such as cleaning and greening.
The meeting is also expected to discuss on enhancing local readiness to respond to disasters, achieving hunger resilience through the zero-hunger initiative and how to address migration and population movement in the continent.