Ruto calls for concerted efforts to curb road accidents as he unveils action plan

President William Ruto (fourth right) and Transport CS Kipchumba Murkomen (second right) and other officials from private and public sectors during the launch of the National Road Safety Action Plan in Nairobi on Wednesday.

President William Ruto has said the government would strengthen safety measures on the roads to reduce the number of accidents by at least 50 per cent.

The President, who was speaking as he launched the National Road Safety Action Plan (NRSAP) 2024-2028 in Nairobi, said the rising number of fatalities and injuries on the roads are worrying as they affect economic growth.

At least 4,500 people die every year on the roads and 20,000 others are hospitalised with critical injuries, the National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA) data shows.

President Ruto said this trend is unsustainable as the government and families spend huge amounts of money that should be going to development and other needs on taking care of the injured.

“Our focus is on results in this action plan. Our target is to reduce road accidents by at least 50 percent. My expectation and that of Kenyans is that this reduction must be achieved,” President Ruto said as he unveiled the document prepared by the NTSA.

He identified corruption as one of the biggest contributors to road carnage as it aids in making drivers speed, evade inspection, drink-drive and be reckless as they can bribe their way.

The President said the government would intensify civic education and instill a culture of safety on the roads.

He added that the government would provide resources, address legal gaps and enhance automation of road safety management to curb accidents.

The President directed that all black spots and junctions on major highways and roads where most accidents happen to be fitted with cameras by the end of this year to monitor drivers’ behaviour.

He asked various stakeholders, including development partners, private sector and ordinary Kenyans, to collaborate with the government in road safety mainstreaming.

Mr Kipchumba Murkomen, the Cabinet Secretary for Roads, Transport and Public Works, said the action plan would enhance road safety as it has various measures that the government would take to keep roads safe, including the training of drivers.

He said the strategy would rely on technology that includes the use of telematics, to enhance safety on the roads.

The European Union Ambassador to Kenya Henriette Geiger said the action plan would promote safety on the road to reduce road accidents that have resulted into heavy economic losses.

She said the EU would continue to invest in various road projects and safety programmes to reduce road carnage.

The Kenya Yearbook Editorial Board (KYEB) has committed to use its publications to strengthen the public awareness on road safety.

KYEB chief executive officer, Ms Lilian Kimeto, noted that enhancing road safety awareness is an important and urgent national goal, especially at this time when the numbers of road accidents have soared.

KYEB is mandated to enhance government communications through its publications, as well as promote awareness on the different initiatives by various State agencies.

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