By Dawn Wang
On Saturday, various charitable organizations started taking actions in response to the earthquake in Yaan, Sichuan province. The nation’s largest charity organization, the Chinese Red Cross, while responding with admirable speed, attracted much criticism on Weibo due to previous scandals.
The Chinese Red Cross was one of the first organization to respond to the Yaan quake. The organisation’s official Weibo account announced earlier that it had dispatched a team to investigate in Yaan. However, the post has been receiving thumb-down emoticons and profane comments from thousands of Chinese netizens. Two years after the Guo Meimei scandal, it appears that Red Cross China is still suffering from a serious lack of credibility.
Guo Meimei, whose online wealth-flaunting led to such backlash against the Red Cross in 2011 that it allegedly led to a blood shortage in Beijing, was back in the news this month. Guo was accused of trading sex for money and favours in a luxury Sanya resort. She posted photo of casino chips worth 5 million yuan in response, “proving” that she was “too rich to need to sell sex”.
@时评聚焦 posted on Weibo comparing the amounts of donations received by the One Foundation, founded by actor Jet Li, and Red Cross China on April 20, asking how “China Red Cross received 140 thousand yuan, while One Foundation received over 22.4 million yuan”?
The WSJ’s China Real Time blog interviewed an official at Red Cross China:
“No matter what Internet users say, we have a clear conscience,” said the official, who gave only his surname, Li. “The priority right now is on relief efforts. The first thing is to save the lives of those in the disaster zone.”