Govt calls for enhanced road safety during Easter

Enhanced co-operation and responsibility from citizens and law enforcement agencies is needed during the Easter holidays to ensure road safety, Home Affairs and Cultural Heritage Minister Kazembe Kazembe said at the launch of the Easter Road Safety Awareness campaign.

In a speech read on his behalf by his deputy Chido Sanyatwe, Minister Kazembe highlighted the critical need for collective action to prevent needless loss of life even with police heavily deployed.

“Improving road safety is a shared responsibility that requires concerted action by several players. As a multi-sectoral and multi-disciplinary issue, clear lines of institutional responsibility and accountability are crucial.

 “Let me also take this opportunity to say it here and say it loudly that, the police will never under its watch, let some misguided elements continue to expose human lives to needless and very careless danger on the country’s roads during this Easter holiday and even beyond. 

I thus wish to send a very strong warning to all reckless road users, unlicensed transport operators, including all those who board these mushikashikas and all violators of traffic laws that the net has closed.

“We are appealing for cooperation from members of the public to assist in our efforts to create road safety and enjoin every citizen to be responsible as we collectively work to save lives.”

Minister Kazembe told the police to uphold integrity, shun corruption, and strictly enforce road safety laws.

“To the police, I urge you to be vigilant. Perform your duty as mandated by the law. Do not trade your integrity for a bribe. How do you sleep well when the drunken driver you allowed to pass through a roadblock ends-up causing an accident killing people? 

“Let me once again remind Zimbabweans to exercise extreme caution on the road and save human life since the consequences of road accidents constitute a major problem for society, the economy, development and public health.”

He attributed many of these accidents to human error with few being mechanical faults or due to the state of roads or to flooding. 

“Among the generic reasons why the nation is so hard hit by road safety problems, we see the following critical causes: drinking and driving; speeding; worn or defective tyres; illegal or dangerous overtaking; not wearing a seatbelt; driving while under the influence of alcohol; drivers’ recklessness; poor lane discipline; phone usage; state of vehicles; unlicensed drivers; overloading; among several others. I thus urge you to be alert today and be alive tomorrow. Take good care during the Easter holiday. Remember that a fast drive could be your last drive.”

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