RNP News

Thursday, 15 February, 2018

[PHOTOS]: Road safety campaign shifts to motorcyclists

RPC Central, ACP Felly Rutagerura Bahizi speaking to motorcyclists at Nyamirambo stadium.

The road safety campaign aimed at averting accidents continued yesterday across the country with focus on commercial motorcyclists, one of the leading causes of accidents.

The awareness campaign was conducted concurrently in all the 30 districts to reach out to the over 55, 000 motorcyclists in the country.

In the City of Kigali, which has more than 13000 motorcyclists, the Regional Police Commander-Central, Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Felly Rutagerura Bahizi said that although motorcyclists contribute to the country’s development, their conduct on road also continue to raise security concerns.

“Your business profession provides quick transport; you pay taxes and support your families, but at times at the expense of lives of others due to your recklessness. Respect traffic signposts, don’t ride if you don’t have a driver’s permit, overtake when you are very sure that it’s safe and overtake from the right side,” ACP Bahizi said.

Motorcyclists gave their views during the meeting in Kigali.

The RPC was referring to footages taken by CCTV cameras, which was played to the motorcyclists, showing their reckless riding behaviors related to speeding, violating the right to way for pedestrians and vehicles and careless maneuvers through which some of them and their passengers have lost lives and others left with lifetime injuries.

Accidents caused by motorcyclists accounted for 18.5 percent of the total accidents registered last year.

Motorcyclists also account for 30 percent of the total accidents registered last month.

“Majority accidents are caused by failure to respect traffic rules and road safety signs. Don’t use a phone when you are riding, stop especially where signposts require you to do so because when you continue you are likely to be hit by motorist from another direction,” the RPC said.

He called for partnership against their errand colleagues, who also facilitate or commit other crimes like theft and drug trafficking.

Motorcyclists gave their views during the meeting in Kigali.

Meanwhile, ACP Bahizi also hinted on the issue of motorcyclists’ security personnel, who confiscate documents such as driver’s license of their members, saying that “that’s the duty of Police.”

Elsewhere, the Governor of the Eastern Province, Fred Mufurukye, while addressing hundreds of motorcyclists in Bugesera District, also cautioned them against lawlessness including theft and trafficking of illicit drugs.

He urged them to be defined by values of hygiene, discipline and to partner with security organs to fight criminality.

In the Northern Province, Governor Jean Marie Vianney Gatabazi, while addressing about 600 motorcyclists in Musanze District, said that rampant accidents can be a bottleneck to development.

RPC North, ACP Eric Mutsinzi speaking in Musanze.

He further hinted on the issue of child pregnancies with motorcyclists being some of the people responsible.

Tough measures against errant motorcyclists

Meanwhile, Solomon Bigirimana, the acting president of FERWACOTAMO, the federation of commercial motorcycle operators in Rwanda, said that the federation is being revamped to address the longstanding issues faced by their members, but also to blacklist errant members.

“In few weeks, you will be applying and collecting transport authorization permit from RURA individually not your cooperatives like it is; all security personnel will be trained to know their limits, and having uniform,” Bigirimana said.

“However, as we try to address the challenges that you are facing, we are also taking measures against members with misconduct; anyone that will be caught in theft and snatching people’s belongings, trafficking narcotic drugs or collaborating with criminals will be expelled and blacklisted from motorcycle transport business,” he added.

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