Transport Ministry develops road accidents data system
The Minister of Transport, Kwaku Ofori Asiamah, has stated that Ghana is developing a road accidents data management systems (RADMS) to adequately capture, store and use data to inform policy.
He explained that with a credible data system, the country could identify, diagnose and prescribe cost effective measures for safer roads.
Delivering the keynote address in Accra at the Bloomberg Philantropies Initiative for Global Road Safety Regional Meeting for Africa, Mr Asiamah said no effective road safety management could be achieved without credible data and information.
The three-day meeting, which deliberated on road safety as a public health issue, attracted government officials, road safety experts and public health advocates from five cities where the Bloomberg Philanthropies Initiative for Global Road Safety currently operates.
These are Accra and Kumasi in Ghana; Addis Ababa in Ethiopia; Kampala in Uganda, and Mombasa in Kenya.
The event also attracted representatives from renowned international organisations such as the World Bank, the Global Road Safety Facility, World Health Organisation, Johns Hopkins International Injury and Research Unit, the Global Road Safety Partnership, Global Health Advocacy Incubator and World Resources Institute.
Participants shared respective achievements and accomplishments and discussed challenges in implementing best practice interventions that reduced traffic crashes and saved lives.
Mr Asiamah encouraged other countries to develop their own data systems by seeking assistance from the Bloomberg Initiative.
He noted that it was important that African countries strengthened their partnership with strategic laws in the area of technology, data management, traffic laws enforcement practices and post-crash care.
''Road safety is multi-sectoral and requires stronger collaboration and sustainable financing to make real progress," he said.
Mr Asiamah said the country was reviewing its road traffic laws to address some identified implementation challenges to reflect changes and emerging trends in the road transport industry.
“At the moment, we are implementing our third strategy for road safety management dubbed the National Road Safety TV (2021-2030),” he said.
This strategy, Mr Asiamah said, was in line with the United Nations Second Decade of Action for Road Safety which had the ultimate goal of reducing fatalities and injuries by 50 per cent by the end of 2030.
The Chief Executive of the Accra Metropolitan Assembly, Elizabeth Kwatsoe Sackey, stated that several initiatives using four strands of expertise in the areas of safer streets and mobility, communications, surveillance and enforcement had chalked up several successes.
She stated that by undertaking those initiatives, they envisioned Accra becoming a city that did not only plan for today’s residents and current context, but one that anticipated future growth, challenges and was prepared for future unknown social, environmental and physical risks.
The Director-General of the Motor Traffic and Transport Department, Commissioner of Police Francis Ebenezer Doku, said the cost of lives lost through road traffic accident was immeasurable and irreparable.
“It is worthy to state that road traffic accidents have led to some children becoming orphans, school dropouts and ultimately a burden on the state,” he said.
He said road safety was a collaborative effort between various stakeholders, hence the need for players to join forces to get the synergies required to turn roads from becoming a deadly arena to a safe haven.