The deputy speaker of Parliament, Thomas Tayebwa has urged VIPs to drive with caution as one way of reducing road crashes on the roads, calling for collective effort to bring an end to this in the country.
Tayebwa made the remarks as he flagged off a road safety walk from Kampala to Mbale city in Eastern Uganda by Joseph Beyanga commonly known as Joe Walker with the purpose of creating awareness about road safety concerns in the country.
The move comes in the wake of enormous reports by traffic police about fatalities revealing that every week, a country loses tens of people to these road mishaps. For instance, in the first month of 2023, a total of 340 accidents were reported on Ugandan roads.
The effort which is centered on the analogy dubbed ‘Too Young to die’ indicates that no one should die prematurely due to road carnage and thus Safe Roads Save lives.
While flagging off this event, Tayebwa noted that VIPs are not any special from other road users. VIPs have been blamed for exacerbating the road accidents problem on Ugandan roads due to inconsiderate driving.
Tayebwa said that the fight shouldn’t be a one man’s battle, adding that accidents are issues that can’t be solved by gun shots.
He said that road safety requires joint effort and is not a preserve for a few advocates.
“Road accidents and environment among others are things you can’t shoot with a gun. We cannot say we are going to deploy tanks; you must deploy all the might of the community into people’s hearts to appreciate that these are matters that we must tackle,” Tayebwa said.
His concerns come at a time when Parliament is still finding it hard to come to terms with the loss of its member , the Serere County MP ,Patrick Okabe who died of an accident alongside his wife Christine Okabe in December 2022.
The Deputy Speaker said a lot needs to be done in terms of putting in place all the necessary legislation and policies to stop the carnage on our roads.
“We have lost many people in road accidents. Recently, I lost my brother-in-law in an accident, we lost our brother and his wife Hon. Okabe, recently the whole country was mourning, and very many other people we may not know have not survived. The family of justice Mugamba recently lost three people to a fatal accident, “Tayebwa grieved.
“As Ugandans, regardless of our positions, we must come together and fight back. We are all in this together. This matter requires public mobilisation, accidents are environmental issues,”he added.
Additional reporting by Muhamadi Matovu