In 2012, under the leadership of Nestlé, Zurich Insurance and Activa Insurance, a conference on road safety in Africa was held in Ghana. This first conference entitled, ‘The Roads Between Us’, brought together stakeholders from the public, private and civil society sectors and enjoyed great success both within the conference, and in the establishment of an ongoing road safety sharing platform, the ‘Roads Between Us’ calls, now hosted by the Global Road Safety Partnership.
Building on the positive experience in Anglophone Africa and extending efforts into Francophone countries, Nestlé, Zurich and Activa joined together once again to lead a second conference entitled ‘Sharing the Road’ on 14 and 15 October 2014 in Douala, Cameroon.
The key objectives of the conference were to bring together stakeholders from the three sectors and:
- create a platform for exchange of best practice with no commercial interest in an open and positive environment;
- contribute to sustainable development of road safety programmes;
- create shared value with clearly defined goals in the short, medium and long term for the benefit of all participants.
Across two days and attracting participants from throughout Cameroon as well as neighbouring countries, representatives from relevant Ministries, road safety NGOs, training schools, health, automotive, insurance and oil & gas sectors looked in detail at the state of roads and driver behaviour in Cameroon, data collection and analysis, emergency services and driver training. Models of good practice road safety interventions were also shared from the private sector and civil society perspectives, including a presentation by GRSP sharing learnings from the many African projects in which the organization is involved.
Interactive sessions led by expert moderators dived deeply into key risk factors of alcohol and speed. The media reported widely on the event. Miss Cameroon 2014, Larissa Ngangoum, a road safety ambassador attended both days, assuring that she would actively promote the road safety culture through her work in schools and beyond.
Grounded in a deeper understanding of the task ahead, participants left the conference with a sense of optimism and renewed vigour to act. Follow up communication will endeavour to build an ongoing dialogue between participants to continue sharing successes and discussing challenges throughout the region.
A detailed account of the conference can be found on the GRSP Twitter Account by searching for the following hashtag: #PartageonsLaRoute