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08.09.2004 Politics

Police to arrest party activists who neglect road safety regulations

By GNA

Accra, Sept. 8, GNA - Mr Johnson Clifford Aboagye, Chairman of the National Road Safety Commission on Wednesday warned that the police would arrest drivers who allowed party activists to hang or perch on the roof of their vehicles to show solidarity to their parties.

He said the Police would be on the roads and on rally grounds to arrest those activists, who neglected the road safety regulations. The measure, he said, was not to deter any political party from rallying but it was rather to save human lives and to prevent accidents that could occur during the electioneering campaigns.

Mr Aboagye was speaking at a forum organized to sensitise political parties on the need to ensure road safety during the campaign period leading to Election 2004.

He said the 2000 electioneering campaign period recorded many vehicular accidents saying: "We saw how fanatical party supporters perched precariously on moving vehicles, some sat on the bonnets, some on the booths of fast moving party vehicles. Most of these ended in fatal consequences."

Mr Aboagye, who said he was not happy about the political parties representation at the forum said concerted efforts targeted at the risk factors could bring about a reduction in the number of accidents, casualties and injuries and the overall improvement in road safety.

"More than 80 per cent of road accidents are caused by the human factor, hence the need to educate and enforce traffic regulations. The first quarter of this year for instance witnessed 4,870 accidents resulting in 408 deaths and 3,240 persons being injured. Road accidents data in the country indicates that over 90 per cent of accidents occurring on our roads are avoidable" he said.

Mr Aboagye urged drivers especially drivers of political party vehicles to ensure maximum safety on the roads during the campaign period to avoid unnecessary and avoidable deaths.

"Ghana needs all her human resources, trained or untrained and, therefore, to wipe them away through preventable death is really worrying" he said.

He presented a code of conduct that would serve as a guideline during this year's electioneering campaign to representatives of political parties present.

Apart from the Convention People's Party (CPP) and the People's National Convention (PNC), the other political parties were not represented.

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