Khomas governor Laura McLeod-Katjirua has expressed concern over the rate of road accidents recorded in the region for the past three years.
In a speech read on her behalf by the chairperson of Khomas Regional Council, John Moonde, at the launch of the festive season road safety campaign at the Okapuka roadblock in Windhoek on Tuesday, the governor said it has consistently been one of the regions with a high number of road crashes since independence.
From January to the end of October this year, 393 people died on Namibia’s roads, while 438 people died on Namibian roads during the same period last year.
Of all the crashes in Namibia, 33% occur in the Khomas region, while pedestrians are involved in 29% of accidents in the region.
The governor said the number of road accidents portrays a negative image of the region; hence, the ministry of transport and other stakeholders should help overcome the negative reputation of the region.
McLeod-Katjirua called on motorists to use the road safely and turn the region into a beacon of hope, prosperity and opportunities for many Namibians.
“I hereby pledge our full support to the government’s efforts in the transport sector in general and the road safety subsector through the lines ministry and the national road safety council,” said McLeod-Katjirua.
She also cautioned road users not to overburden communities with preventable loss of lives.
“Our region is ready to fully support the initiatives of the National Road Safety Council and to also contribute positively to the larger national agenda of the transport sector,” she said.
Khomas has since independence recorded
the highest number of road crashes, with over 50% of accidents in the country happening in the region.
Speaking at the same event, the chairman of the National Road Safety Council Eliphas !Owos-Oab said Namibians have reached the busy period of the year, where the national roads will be the busiest.
He said stakeholders are fully armed to fight the battle with vigour. The national road safety operation began on 22 November 2022 and will conclude in mid-January 2023.
“The journey to save one life has begun today to protect the lives of Namibians, as the festive season is looming.
“We view every campaign as an opportunity to save lives, educate our road users and ensure that only as the last resort, punitive measures are applied, where it becomes necessary,” explained !Owos-Oab.
He said, according to a detailed examination, it demonstrated that the highly populated areas across the country are where crashes happen mostly during the festive season.
He further noted that during festive seasons, weekends are riskier, with 52% of car crashes in 2021 occurring from Friday to Sunday.
!Owos-Oab said the festive road safety campaigns will be targeting the B1 and B2 roads, as the two highways have been identified as hubs of road accidents during festive seasons.