President Peter Mutharika on Friday inaugurated this year’s Malawi Red Cross Society (MRCS) Flag Week with a K1 million donation and urged Malawians to make significant contributions to the outstanding charity organisation.
“If the world is a better place to live in today, this is partly because of the work that humanitarian organisations like the Red Cross movement carry out among our communities,” said Mutharika, who is MRCS patron.
Speaking at Kamuzu Palace in Lilongwe during the Flag Week inauguration, Mutharika pointed out that since it was founded in 1863 by a Geneva businessperson, Henri Dunant, the Red Cross and Red Crescent movement has served mankind well in situations, including wars and disasters.
In Malawi, the President commended the Red Cross for its various humanitarian and social interventions aimed at improving lives of vulnerable people, who include many who were affected by the country’s worst floods early last year.
The President, however, noted with regret that while MRCS wants to assist more needy people in the country, it is currently reeling from financial challenges, mainly because of recent cutbacks in donor support and the fact that, since 12 years ago, the Malawi Government withdrew the annual budgetary support it used to give to the organisation.
“Government will look into this matter and find a way of addressing it,” Mutharika assured, pointing out that the Red Cross in Malawi was formed as a national humanitarian society by an Act of Parliament in 1966.
The event was spiced by the awarding of two special Red Cross certificates to the President—one as an appreciation for his being the movement’s patron and the other for formally joining MRCS as Volunteer Number 30 000.
In his speech, MRCS president Levison Changole saluted Mutharika and his government for providing technical support that has inspired the organisation to serve needy people well.n