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Ruto reads riot act to traffic offenders

No one will be exempted from road safety compliance

Tough action will be taken against those who violate traffic laws and cause deaths and injuries, President William Ruto has said.

The President said road negligence must stop and road safety measures enhanced, including adoption of modern technologies to enhance monitoring of traffic violations and introduce instant fines.

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Saying that no one will be exempted from road safety compliance, President Ruto pointed out that the government is dealing with corruption among traffic police officers because the vice makes them turn a blind eye to speeding and reckless driving which then causes accidents.

“Our justice, law and order agencies must coordinate and sustain robust law enforcement by ensuring that offenders are detected, apprehended, prosecuted and punished swiftly and transparently,” he said.

President Ruto made the remarks during the launch of the National Road Safety Action Plan 2024 -2028 at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre in Nairobi.

Cabinet Secretaries Kipchumba Murkomen and Ezekiel Machogu, Nairobi Governor Johnson Sakaja, and European Union Ambassador to Kenya Henriette Geiger among others were present.

He said the launch of the plan will facilitate a multi-sectoral approach to road safety.

“The government is committed to supporting the implementation of the National Road Safety Action Plan by providing resources, addressing legal and regulatory gaps and enhancing the capacity of the National Police Service,” he said.

President Ruto called for stronger collaboration between the National Transport and Safety Authority and the Traffic Department of the police in the implementation of the safety action plan.

He said the plan must lead to the reduction of accidents, deaths and related injuries by 50 per cent in the next one year.

“The number of road accidents must come down. It is my expectation that we will be the administration that will deal with this challenge,” he said.

The President pointed out that road accidents were overwhelming hospitals with the high numbers of critical injuries.

He said the government is working with development partners not only to improve road infrastructure, but also revamp road safety in the country.

President Ruto pledged that the government will enhance safety awareness campaigns to nurture a national culture of safety and responsible road usage.

The President urged the public to contribute to ensuring road safety across the country by playing their part.

“Evading inspection, neglecting vehicle safety maintenance, reckless behaviour on the road and paying bribes to avoid accountability are serious forms of contributory misconduct, which must be punished,” he added.

Mr Murkomen said road safety calls for joint efforts among road users, emphasising that drivers and riders have a pivotal role to play in curbing accidents.

“The greatest cause of road accidents is negligence,” he said.

He said the use of technology will significantly enhance road safety in the country.

Ambassador Geiger said the EU and other development partners are committed to supporting the implementation of the National Road Safety Action Plan to ensure the safety of the people.

Governor Sakaja urged institutions responsible for enforcing traffic laws to intensify their efforts and ensure motorists adhere to regulations.

He raised concerns over the increasing instances of boda boda operators flouting traffic laws even in the presence of police officers.

National Assembly Departmental Committee on Transport and Infrastructure Chairperson George Kariuki pledged Parliament’s support for the implementation of road safety laws to uphold the safety of our roads.

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