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31.08.2004 General News

Trillion cedis spent on road safety annually

By GNA
Accra, Aug. 31, GNA - About one trillion cedis is spent on road safety activities annually.
These include medical and funeral expenses, disruption to industry and commerce, and loss of property.
Sheikh Ibrahim Quaye, Greater Accra Regional Minister, who gave the statistics in an address at a meeting of the National and Regional Road Safety Committees, said that amount could have been used to support or improve development programmes.
Sheikh Quaye said safety on the roads was of paramount importance because if people were incapacitated through injuries or skilled manpower was lost through deaths on the roads, development would be greatly hampered.
He appealed to the public to help halt the carnage on the roads. "Always bear in mind that road safety is shared by all of us." Chief Superintendent Victor Tandoh, Greater Accra Commanding Officer, Motor Traffic and Transport Unit (MTTU), said last year over 9,000 drivers were prosecuted for various traffic offences in Accra and an amount of 2.5 billion cedis fines collected.
This year over 5,000 drivers have been prosecuted fetching the state an amount of nearly 1.8 billion cedis.
He said the unit was collaborating with other road safety agencies to enforce road safety laws and to embark on public education. Chief Supt. Tandoh mentioned inadequate human and material resources, absence of motor courts, the seeming un-preparedness of most drivers to respect traffic regulation and the lukewarm attitude of the public towards road traffic issues as challenges hampering the efforts of the police.
He appealed to drivers' union executives to assist the committee and the MTTU to ensure road safety by inspecting vehicles, documents and drivers before they took off.
They should also introduce "a First-to-take off, first-to-arrive at destination" system to help reduce speed and accidents on the roads. Nii Adjetey Mohenu, Abokobi Mantse who presided, said safety on the roads was far from the best due to gross indiscipline on the part of some drivers and road users.
He urged the committee to come out with directives that would make roads in Accra safe for all. 31 Aug. 04


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