Dr. Benard Okoe Boye, the Member of Parliament (MP) for Ledzokuku, has stressed the need for the nation to pay more attention to the prevention of road traffic accidents and their attendant repercussions.
In a graphic description of the injuries associated with road traffic accidents, Dr Boye, a medical doctor, said the phenomenon killed more people than HIV/AIDS, and wondered why “it was better to come to Ghana with a helmet than mosquito repellent”.
Dr Boye’s call was made in a contribution to a statement by Madam Mavis Nkansah- Boadu, the MP for Afigya Sekyere East, in Parliament on “the need to enforce road traffic and motor regulations”.
He expressed regret about the loss of lives, the maiming and incapacitation associated with road traffic accidents, explaining that more needed to be done to reduce road traffic accidents and the injuries associated with them.
He cited, for instance, the numerous accidents on the N1 Highway and called for more footbridges to be built on it to save the lives of the people.
“It is time to consider the health aspects of projects,” Dr Boye said, and wondered why road traffic accident figures in Ghana had reached 10,000 annually in recent times against the targeted 4,000 annually.
Minority Leader Haruna Iddrisu made a clarion call on road users, especially motorists, to observe road traffic regulations and signs at all times.
He urged the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Authority (DVLA) to check the background of license applicants before they were granted licenses, stressing the need for drivers to be literate and be able to read road signs before gaining licences.
Mr. Iddrisu recalled an incident in Accra where a driver, illiterate and did not understand road signs, had to stop at a zebra crossing and moved on when school children were crossing.
He said when the children brought the attention of the driver to the Zebra crossing, the driver remarked, “But you are not zebras,” making the entire chamber reel with laughter.
The former Chief Executive Officer of DVLA and now First Deputy Speaker, Joe Osei Owusu, expressed regret about the loss of lives and property through road traffic accidents.