A two-day training workshop to develop a road safety mass media campaign ended in Kumasi with a call to the government to allocate more funds to road safety measures to fully address the road safety issue.
“Road safety work is capital-intensive and requires sufficient funding to enable stakeholders, particularly the National Road Safety Authority (NRSA), to perform their mandate efficiently,” said the Bloomberg Philanthropies Initiative for Global Road Safety (BIGRS.). ) is said to have said the communications officer Mavis Obeng.
She said this during the training workshop organized by the Kumasi Metropolitan Assembly (KMA) in collaboration with NRSA and led by BIGRS on Wednesday 13th and Thursday 14th October 2021 in Golden Tulip, Kumasi.
The workshop, organized for communications officers or road safety advocacy managers, aimed to strengthen the capacity of stakeholders in Kumasi City to implement mass media campaigns on road safety.
Participants also broadened their knowledge of intersectoral partnership and coordination; why, how and when mass media should be included in the national and local road safety strategy or as part of a program, framework for campaign development from planning to assessment, best practices in road safety communication, type of resources needed and how limited resources can be used, and internal advocate for road safety campaigns and resource allocation.
The communications officer from BIGRS Ghana also called for multisectoral partnerships and cooperation between interest groups.
“For long-term improvements, mass media campaigns should be an integral part of a comprehensive multi-sector strategy that includes vehicle safety, road user behavior, the road environment, evidence-based planning and effective enforcement of traffic laws.”
In his speech at the workshop, Dr. Raphael Awuah, Africa’s regional data and surveillance advisor for vital strategies, suggested that road safety issues should be given more attention and urgency, just as the government did at the start of the 19 pandemic in the country to curb the spread of the deadly virus.
He raised concerns about why more attention and resources were being devoted to preventing the spread of COVID-19, neglecting the decades-old death toll.
Dr. Awuah pointed out that there was growing evidence that road traffic accidents resulted in multiple deaths and injuries annually, adding that it added that this contributed significantly to the global burden of road traffic accidents. According to him, data from the Global Burden of Road Traffic Crashes in low-middle-income countries for 2019-2020 showed that road accidents were the 10th leading cause of death, with around 27 deaths per 100,000 people in Africa in 2013 and 2016 .
He also took the opportunity to call on the country’s road safety authorities to do their part to improve safety, especially among vulnerable road users.
Mr. Randy Wilson, the coordinator of the KMA-BIGRS initiative, stated that while human error plays a large role in the many accidents, we cannot fully attribute all accidents to them. He explained that a failure of the road network can also lead to traffic accidents. On this occasion he called on all traffic safety authorities to do their part for the safety of our rods.
The Bloomberg Philanthropies Initiative for Global Road Safety (BIGRS) works in Ghana with the Kumasi Metropolitan Assembly (KMA), the Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA) and the National Road Safety Authority (NRSA) on the development of communication strategies to reduce traffic accidents, injuries and deaths. BIGRS focuses on speed management because this is the core of the traffic accident problem, speed influences both the risk of an accident and the severity of the consequences of a collision