Essence of Humanitarian Services
World humanitarian Day is held every year on 19th August to pay tribute to aid workers who risk and sometimes lose their lives in humanitarian services.
The day is also to rally support for people affected by crisis around the world.
This year, particular attention is being given to women who work in crisis situations.
Women make up a large number of those who risk their lives to save others and they are often the first to respond and the last to leave hence the need to celebrate them on a day like this.
Humanitarian services are needed more than ever before and their role is important based on the fact that more than one hundred and thirty five million people depend on aids to survive.
Also, over sixty eight million people around the world have been forced from their homes due to war, violence, persecution and natural disasters.
In Nigeria for instance, many have been displaced by Boko Haram insurgency and invasions in Borno, Yobe, Plateau, Taraba, Bauchi and Zamfara states while flood have rendered many homeless in parts of Abuja, Lagos, Delta, Cross River and Nasarawa states.
Furthermore, herders/farmers clashes as well as communal clashes have sacked communities in the middle belt and parts of central and southern Nigeria.
People have fled their home taking refuge in camps scattered across the country.
They cannot survive the ordeals without support from humanitarian organisations such as World Food Programme, WFP, International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, IFRC, action against hunger, OxFam international and cooperative for assistance and relief everywhere, care.
It is pertinent for world leaders to put machinery in motion for the protection of people caught in conflict as wel as for those carrying out this all important assignment.
Stronger commitment by heads of government must be given towards prevention or diversion of materials aid to the people.
Hostage taking of aid workers should be condemned strongly and discouraged.
On no occassion should humanitarian services be politicised for its aims to be achieved.
Since world humanitarian day is a global celebration of people helping people, everyone should make it a point of duty to render help and support for those in conflicts around them.
Also, in commemoration of World Humanitarian Day, Radio Nigeria correspondent, Abiodun Akinluwa interviews some residents of Akure, Ondo State, who call on government to expedite action on securing the release of aid workers abducted by kidnappers and insurgents.
Anthonia Akanji/ Abiodun Akinluwa