Banjarmasin, South Kalimantan (ANTARA) - The Indonesian Red Cross (PMI) members must arrive at a disaster zone within six hours of the disaster having struck in order to start the disaster relief mission for victims, Chairperson Jusuf Kalla stated.

"Wherever the disaster is, (PMI members) must arrive at the site within six hours," Kalla remarked while officiating the South Kalimantan PMI leadership for the 2022-2027 term here, Wednesday.

Kalla underscored that PMI members are capable of abiding by the six-hour rule to arrive at the disaster zone, as they have been scattered nationwide across all cities and districts.

As a major national humanitarian organization, the PMI must contribute to the nation in concrete ways, including by providing disaster relief and medical assistance to anyone in need, regardless of differences.

"The main thing is equality and non-discrimination. Anyone who needs help, either in disasters, wars, or other humanitarian crises, must be assisted," Kalla emphasized.

Meanwhile, the former vice president said that Banjarmasin, South Kalimantan's largest city, would be the logistics center for PMI on the island for its strategic location.

"If there is a disaster in Central Kalimantan, the logistics center would be in Banjarmasin because of its proximity to the airport, which can help improve our speed to help the people," the PMI head noted.

He urged the South Kalimantan PMI to work diligently and promptly in disaster relief missions as well as to collect blood for hospital patients.

Kalla also expressed optimism that Gusti Iskandar, the new head of the provincial PMI, would bolster the province's PMI performance.

Meanwhile, South Kalimantan Governor H. Sahbirin Noor, who serves as chair of the provincial PMI's Guardian Council, conveyed the provincial authorities' support for the local PMI leadership.

While describing the PMI as a "noble movement," Noor affirmed that the agency will always be present to help all people regardless of ethnic groups or religious differences.

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Translator: Sukarli, Nabil Ihsan
Editor: Azis Kurmala
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