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Kenya ministry intensifies campaign to reduce road fatalities 

NAIROBI (Xinhua) -- Kenya’s ministry of transport in partnership with industry and welfare groups on Thursday announced a new campaign targeting motorists and pedestrians in a bid to reduce road accidents that claims an estimated 3,000 lives annually in the country.

Ministry of transport officials said at a forum in Nairobi that a revitalized road safety awareness campaign involving stakeholders in government and private sector was an imperative in order to end carnage on major highways.

Martin Eshiwani, the head of road transport services in the ministry of transport and infrastructure said that public education, law enforcement alongside improved road designs will be prioritized to reduce accidents on urban highways.

“There are various ways to minimize fatalities on our roads and we are in agreement with key stakeholders that aggressive campaigns targeting pedestrians, motorists, law enforcement agencies and contractors are long over-due to tackle this menace,” Eshiwani remarked.

Kenya ranks among Sub-Saharan with high road fatalities linked to drunken driving, lax policing and over speeding.

Eshiwani said the government has focused on retraining of drivers, technology driven monitoring of vehicular flow along highways as well as erection of speed bumps and signage to reduce accidents.

“We have increased the number of foot bridges in the major highways alongside deploying additional police officers to monitor and apprehend motorists who flout traffic rules,” said Eshiwani.

Kenya recorded a 3 percent reduction in road accidents between 2015 to 2016 thanks to improved policing along major highways, robust public awareness and enactment of punitive legislation.

The Director General of National Transport Safety Authority (NTSA), Francis Meja, said Kenya has borrowed global best practices to reduce road accidents that are a major public health challenge in the country.

“We are targeting high risk roads in Nairobi and other major towns in the new campaign to educate motorists and pedestrians on the enormous price to pay for flouting traffic rules,” said Meja.

He added that traffic police, driving schools, learning institutions and community welfare groups will be part of the new campaign to educate pedestrians, motorists and motorcycle riders on the need to observe traffic rules.



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