FRSC reiterates commitment to eradicate road fatalities

FRSC Corp Marshal Boboye Oyeyemi and ACM Bisi Kazeem

The Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) says it is committed to the complete eradication of road crashes and its attendant fatalities in the country.

The Corps Marshal, FRSC, Dr Boboye Oyeyemi said this in an interview with newsmen on Monday in Abuja.

He said that over time the Corps was able to reverse the abysmal data about the figures of death recorded on Nigeria’s roads by both local and international bodies.

Oyeyemi said that one of such reports was that which states over 100 persons to die in Nigeria per day through road crashes.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) global status reports on road safety in 2018 gave the figure.

“Despite progress, road traffic deaths continue to rise, with an annual 1.35 million fatalities. Road traffic injuries are now the leading killer of children and young people aged 05-29 years.

“The risk of a road traffic death remains three times higher in low-income countries than in high-income countries, with rates highest in Africa (26.6 per 100,000 populations) and lowest in Europe (9.3 per 100,000 populations).

“Every year, over 39,000 Nigerians die from road crashes,” the WHO 2018 Global Status Report on Road Safety report says.

Oyeyemi said that the estimated figures from WHO were not true, adding that if it was so, it would have resulted to a state of emergency.

“The last report was 39, 000 dies in Nigeria yearly. We have been on this for a while. The last meeting we had was before COVID and we know there was need to improve no doubt.

“But there is need for us to get WHO to sit down and see those efforts government have made so far. The Government has made so much effort in road safety management and administration.

“So it cannot be the same old story and the funniest part of all this report is that there was no mention of the effort at the World Bank towards improving the road safety management in Nigeria.

“World bank has invested so much on the data management. A lot of efforts have been made so far but WHO still sticks to their own report,” he said.

Oyeyemi said that there was need to invite the country director and all the key stakeholders and sit down so that WHO would state the gaps to be filled.

The Minister of Transportation, Mr Rotimi Amaechi also said that the reports from WHO was a true reflection of current situation on road safety and administration in the country.

Amaechi said “I disagree with WHO when they showed me the report on the numbers of people that die daily in Nigeria.

“The reason is that the moment you say 39,000 persons have died in Nigeria, that 100 persons per day and that’s huge, even COVID-19 wasn’t as serious as this.

“Because the moment it gets to 100 deaths per day, it becomes an emergency for the government to address,” he said.

Reacting, the Minister of Health, Mr Osagie Ehanire, also said that the ministry would engage WHO country representative and have a conversation.

Ehanire said that the conversation would be based on what it counts as data of road traffic accidents.

“We shall start a conversation. We will also set up teams as well. But we will engage the Country rep. first and then set up a teams to look at the issues, ” he said.(NAN)

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