The new Inspector General of Police, COP George Akuffo Dampare has been asked to make road safety issue a top priority as he takes office as IGP.
This request was made by a road safety campaigner, Kojo Aidoo as part of his monthly DRIVE SAFE road safety campaign series in Accra.
According to the campaigner, traveling on Ghana’s roads has become a nightmare for many Ghanaians as the roads continue to record high number of deaths and injuries every day across the country.
“So far, in the first half of 2021, the MTTD road traffic crash statistics indicate that road accidents have killed 1450 people (a 29.19% rise compared to same period last year where over 1100 people lost their lives).
The number of people who got injured as a result of road crashes around the same period this year was 8,088”, he bemoaned.
Mr. Aidoo, however, expressed worry about the increasing rate of deaths and injuries on our roads, and urged the IGP to make road safety top on his agenda, particularly equipping and empowering the police MTTD to enable them carry out their mandate well to protect lives and property on the road.
The campaigner noted that there are multiple contributory factors to road crashes in the country, but the most prevalent among them are recklessness and disregard for road traffic regulations on the part of the offending drivers who cause the crashes, (notably, over-speeding and wrongful overtaking)
He asked the MTTD to increase their presence on the road with increased efforts to check over speeding and wrongful overtaking in the country.
Making a further request, the campaigner called for emergency contact numbers to be made available for passengers and other road users to report reckless and dangerous situations for immediate response by the police to help prevent crashes.
Mr. Aidoo asked motorists to comply with all road traffic laws, avoid rush driving, and maintain discipline and competence on the road, saying, it is a responsibility on that part of the driver to send occupants on board their vehicles to their destinations safely.
He seriously urged drivers to be responsible on the road and protect pedestrians by stopping for them to cross, while cautioning pedestrians to cross the roads only at designated and safe places.
“Pedestrians should be careful not to walk leisurely on the road, asking them to use the side walks or pavements to avoid endangering themselves and other users of the road”, he concluded.