Transport Minister, Kwaku Ofori Asiamah, has described the recent spate of road accidents in the country as a pandemic. Kwaku Ofori Asiamah says the number of deaths associated with road accidents is alarming.
The National Roads Safety Commission says over 200 people died from road accidents between January and the middle of March 2022.
Kwaku Ofori Asiamah says the matter must be dealt with urgently.
“Most of our cities are prone to road traffic crashes and their attendant fatalities and injuries. It is not out of place to say that road crashes are the new global pandemic considering the very deaths we are recording on our roads. We must assume a more proactive and responsible attitude to deal with it. Road traffic crashes do not result from faith or destiny. They are a product of systems and behaviors.”
“Thus, we must learn the road to prevention and mitigation. It is important, that we need to minimize the dangers on our roads through the creation of a road safety culture. We have to reinforced proper behaviour, safer road infrastructure, and the use of safer vehicles”, the Minister said.
Over the past five days, more than four fatal accidents have occurred in different parts of the country leading to the loss of nearly a dozen lives.
The development has sparked a national discussion about the rising spate of fatal crashes especially on the country’s highways.
When it comes to road accidents, Africa pays the heaviest price with the world’s highest fatality rate of 26.6 road deaths per 100,000 population compared to the world average of 17.5 per 100,000 and 9.3 per 100,000 in Europe (WHO).
The primary objective of the Kofi Annan Road Safety Award is to motivate key stakeholders – governments, private sector, and civil society organisations – to develop and implement innovative and outstanding initiatives to save lives on Africa’s roads.
Driver indiscipline main cause of increasing road crashes – Akufo-Addo
President Akufo-Addo says the Inter-Ministerial Committee set up by the government to investigate the increasing spate of road crashes in the country has identified driver indiscipline as the major cause of the crashes.
Nana Akufo-Addo says the lack of logistics on the part of regulators to implement road traffic regulations was also identified as a challenge in addressing the problem of road crashes.
Speaking at the maiden edition of the Kofi Annan Road Safety Awards in Accra, the President said more work must be done to end the carnage on our roads.
He insisted that without tackling, particularly the issue of driver indiscipline, the fatalities will continue to increase.
“Indiscipline and disrespect for road regulations particularly in relation to travel speeds, driving under the influence of alcohol, wearing of seat belts and overtaking without due care for other vehicles need to be addressed to bring down traffic injuries and fatalities,” he said.