Red Cross wants Good Samaritan law


Uganda Red Cross Society (URCS) is lobbying Parliament to enact a law that makes it legally possible for someone to give aid in an emergency to an injured person on a voluntary basis, Mr Ken Odur Gabelle, the Interim secretary general of URCS, said last week. The Good Samaritan Law, as it is known in most parts of the world, will offer legal protection to people who provide reasonable assistance to those who are injured, ill, in danger, or incapacitated. “It is well known that people are reluctant to provide aid when they come across an accident, where others have been hurt for fear of being held responsible in case something goes wrong,” Mr Odur said while announcing events to mark 50 years of humanitarian service in the country. Mr Odur added that the Good Samaritan law will encourage people to offer assistance to people in need. However, Mr James Nangwala,an experienced lawyer, argues that there is no individual who can be held liable in an emergency situation which goes wrong while he or she was volunteering to save life.“You can only be held liable once you have unlawfully caused death or omitted a procedure that you’re obliged to perform,” observed Mr James Nangwala. Speaking during a press conference at the URCS headquarters in Rubaga, the chairman of the URCS Central Governing Board and Member of Parliament for Kajara County, Mr Stephen Tashobya, said the Bill will be brought to the floor of Parliament as a Private Member’s Bill.

SOURCE: Daily Monitor