The Road Transport and Safety Agency (RTSA) says there is need to intensify road safety awareness following an increase in the number of traffic accidents in recent weeks.
RTSA Board Chairperson, Cornelius Chipoma said the agency is concerned with the rise in road carnages that have claimed lives.
ZANIS reports that Dr Chipoma was speaking when he paid a courtesy call on Northern Province Permanent Secretary, Charles Sipanje today.
Dr Chipoma also expressed concern over the high levels of non-compliance to road safety regulations among road users in rural areas.
“We know that roads are socio-economic spaces but we need to raise awareness among citizens so that we can protect lives and address concerns of road safety,” said Dr Chipoma
He revealed that RTSA will ensure that it carries out an all-inclusive road safety sensitization campaign as part of efforts to reduce accidents.
Dr Chipoma further said the Agency also intends to engage key stakeholders such as traditional leaders in road safety campaign activities.
“Typically, in rural areas compliance is very difficult. We see corollas carrying mattresses, iron sheets with maybe eight passengers. Corollas are doing things that not even a canter can do. So this is a huge concern for us as RTSA,” he said.
Meanwhile, Dr Chipoma has appealed to members of the public to make use of the recently introduced online payment system on the government e-service bus.
He said the Agency is concerned that motorists are not utilizing the platform to pay for services such as road tax, driver’s license renewal and motor vehicle registration.
And Mr Sipanje said the Provincial Administration is equally concerned with the increase in road accidents saying RTSA should scale up safety awareness and road patrols.
He added that the huge investment made by government in road infrastructure development will not bear meaningful results if people do not follow road safety regulations.
“You know the country has been experiencing road accidents and Northern Province is not an exception. Of course RDA is doing everything possible to improve our roads but we need our people to be cautious as they use these roads,” Mr Sipanje said.
Mr Sipanje further called for emergency works on damaged sections of the Kasama-Mpika and Kasama-Mbala-Mpulungu roads which are posing a danger to road users.