Nigeria on the way to global road safety partnership

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Representatives of the Global Road Safety Partnership (GRSP) met with road safety stake holders in Lagos and Abuja, Nigeria in August 2010 to discuss the establishment of a national road safety partnership between the public sector, (led by the Nigerian Federal Road Safety Commission), private sector organizations and civil society.

The 2009 WHO Global Status Report on Road safety puts Nigeria among the ten countries in the world with the highest number of reported road traffic deaths, along with China, India, United States, Pakistan, Indonesia, Russia, Brazil, Egypt and Ethiopia.

GRSP participated in the Nigeria meetings to draw up workable strategies with the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) as well as other stakeholders and potential partners, interested in combating the dangerous rise in road traffic accidents in the country.

“The FRSC will strive towards bringing relevant stakeholders in road safety on the platform of the global road safety partnership in order to create synergy between road traffic administration and safety management in Nigeria,” said Osita Chidoka, Chief Executive of the Nigerian FRSC, which is taking the lead in this process.

“Our primary goal is to reduce road accidents by bringing relevant partners together to ensure proper and efficient coordination to address critical road safety issues such as safety helmets, seat- belts, drunk driving, speed violations, and children’s road safety, using globally recognized good practices,” said Andrew Pearce, GRSP Chief executive officer addressing the meeting.

The meetings in Nigeria are an important event in a series of activities organized with the support of the business secotr in Nigeria to achieve common understanding of collective and individual responsibilities for road safety in the country. Stakeholders will continue to engage in the coming weeks and months, in efforts to formalizing the partnership and identifying potential projects and capacity building efforts.

Nigeria would become the fifth African country to address road safety using GRSP’s comprehensive tri-sector approach, when the partnership is formalized. GRSP has been actively engaged in such partnerships in Ghana, Namibia, South Africa and Zambia, and is also active in the development of new partnerships and projects in the Middle East and North Africa.

Africa is front line in the battle against unnecessary road crash death and injury. With only four per cent of the world’s registered motor vehicles, Africa accounts for nearly 10 per cent of road fatalities globally. To help diminish the suffering caused by road crashes, GRSP is active in creating and supporting regional and national partnerships.