The Corps Marshal of the Federal Road Safety Corps(FRSC), Dr Boboye Oyeyemi has urged Nigerians to drive safely and stay safe as they enter into the new year, saying all bad driving habits should be discarded while the good lessons learnt and practiced during the outgoing year should be sustained with commitment to ensuring personal safety and health of the individuals. This was contained in the new year message to Nigerians by the Corps Marshal of FRSC as part of the ongoing sensitisation efforts by the Corps to curtail the spread of COVID-19 and ensuring public safety through adherence to traffic rules and regulations.
According to a press release signed by the Corps Public Education Officer, Assistant Corps Marshal Bisi Kazeem, the Corps Marshal expressed gratitude to the Almighty God for the grace of protection and guidance given to the nation in the face of the various health, safety and security challenges experienced in the outgoing year. He therefore, appealed for sustained consciousness by people to overcome the challenges in the new year.
The Corps Marshal particularly enjoined members of the public not to violate the guidelines put in place by the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19, stressing the need for people to regularly wash their hands with soap, wear face masks and observe social distancing. These he said, remain the best preventive measures against the infectious disease threatening the entire world through the second wave of the pandemic. “We must remain vigilant in all that we do, to avoid a situation where our actions and inactions could contribute to the spread of the dreaded disease,” he stated.
Bisi further disclosed that though the Corps Marshal is pleased with the conduct of most drivers during the recent Christmas celebration which made the rate and fatalities of road traffic crashes manageable, he however cautioned that if such good habits were not sustained in the new year, there could be a resurgence of crash situation which could undermine the gains made from the special patrol. “Every Nigerian must remain committed to tackling the challenges which road safety and COVID-19 pose to the nation’s health, safely, security and wellbeing by doing what is right at all times,” he further stated.
On the most common factors responsible for fatal crashes during the Christmas celebration, the Corps Marshal restated his earlier observations on the pervasiveness of speeding as a causative factor, noting that Commanding Officers have been given a marching order to force down the rate of speed induced crashes through aggressive enforcement of the laws on speed limiting devices.”The discovery that some Nigerians are still flouting the law on use of speed limiting devices in their vehicles resulting in the upsurge in speed related crashes recorded during the special patrol was unfortunate. But I want to assure all road users that such abdication of responsibility by the drivers would not be tolerated in the new year, “he warns.
Oyeyemi commended all the stakeholders that joined the road safety campaigns during the festive periods to make the roads safer, adding that road safety remains a shared responsibility which no single organisation can tackle all alone without support and collaboration of relevant stakeholders. He specially expressed gratitude to President Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR for rendering all necessary moral and logistics support for the success of the campaigns with particular reference to prompt approval by the Federal Government to the third edition of the Nigeria Road Safety Strategy Document which will increase the impetus of road safety sensitisation programmes in the new year.
The FRSC Corps Marshal called on all Nigerians to embrace the ongoing safer road campaign and make it an all round success for quick socioeconomic development of the nation. He also reminded Nigerians that it’s only the living that can celebrate, stressing that speeding must be contained by all means, despite its thrilling effects.
While admonishing Nigerians on their personal responsibility to the campaigns to make the roads safer, Oyeyemi further urged the people to remain active by always observing the traffic rules and regulations and reporting road and other emergencies promptly to the FRSC toll free line: 122 or the studios of the National Traffic Radio-107.1fm through the telephone lines:08052998090 or 09067000015 for prompt response.
As he wishes all Nigerians safer and prosperous new year, the Corps Marshal assures the nation that FRSC will continue to be vigilant in safeguarding the roads throughout the new year and beyond for safety and security of the people. He further appealed to all to abide by the safety measures put in place to guarantee safety and security of all members of the public.