By Ramatoulie Jawo
The road safety committee and partners on Thursday launched a road safety report.
The dialogue aimed to bring key critical actors in the transport sector and other stakeholders to discuss road safety given the rise of road traffic accidents recorded in the country, recently.
In her opening remarks, Ndey Sireng Bakurin, Executive Director, TANGO said the Gambia is very small to be ranked among the highest countries globally in terms of road accidents.
“It is very sad sometimes if you look at the statistics and see how many accidents Gambia records monthly,” she lamented.
Bakery .K. Manneh, representative, National Road Authority (NRA) said the event should be a concern to everybody as everybody needs to be safe while using the roads.
He assured that his institution as a key role player in road safety would make sure the roads are safe for users.
President, Gambia Transport Union (GTU), Omar Ceesay blamed the frequent road accidents on ‘incompetent drivers’ and authorities concerned.
“In the Gambia, many people are driving but they are incompetent to be drivers in The Gambia and the authorities are not taking steps towards it,” he said.
He said more road accidents are expected in this rainy session due to the ‘very bad conditions’ of the roads that can easily cause accidents.
“I think the Gambia should have a Road Safety Agency so that we can know the fault in our roads and help to assess the drivers and our roads,” the GTU President suggested.
John Charles Njie, chairperson of TANGO expressed disappointment over the absence of the police at the event as key role players in road safety in any country; and assured of TANGO’s continuous support to the initiative to achieve the desired goal.
Imam Baba Leigh suggested the authorities start screening to determine the type of vehicles that should be on the roads.
“Vehicles like “Gele-geles” should not be running in traffic. They are made for factories to be carrying their goods but not human beings,” he said.