Zimbabwe has lost at least 86 people in road accidents across the country since the beginning of the festive period, and many deaths could be recorded during the long weekend due.
From this death toll, 19 people died between Christmas Eve andChristmas Day, itself a sad reminder that motorists must be vigilant on the country’s roads. Sadly, the number of victims could be breadwinners, and that means the country, and their families are poorer without them.
As of yesterday, 86 people had died, up from 75 last year and there had been 1012 accidents again up from 822 in 2013.
Instead of the fatalities decreasing, they are actually going up, hence we should be concerned. Admittedly, the roads are bad, yet we pay for them to be fixed. So where is the money going?
There are patch ups here and there, some sub-standard work that cannot withstand the heavy rains hence the Transport ministry and Zinara must ensure that more work is done on the roads, not just the highways, but also the township roads.
We have every reason to believe some of these accidents could have been avoided. We, however, commend the police for significantly stepping up road safety operations during the 2014 festive season, in order to reduce fatalities on our roads.
With the price of beer down, there is likely to be more carnage before we see the New Year.
It is important that the police take a zero tolerance approach with regard to drunken driving and reckless driving, unroadworthy vehicles and revellers bent on causing mayhem, by way of visible and proactive enforcement throughout the festive period.
Road safety is the responsibility of all road-users. We implore motorists to ensure that their vehicles are fit to be on the road and that they possess valid documentation.
There are so many unregistered and unroadworthy vehicles on the roads today, but they stay on the road because those that are tasked with taking them out will accept a bribe and turn a blind eye.
We urge the public to report criminal activities taking place or activities they suspect are about to take place to the police.
While the police are maintaining a heavy presence on the main roads, there is no doubt that some of them are busy taking bribes to let unroad worthy pass through endangering the lives of millions of Zimbabweans travelling to meet their kith and kin in the countryside.
It is the citizens and drivers that are more concerned because the government cares less. What are the educational campaigns that have been taking place in the last 12 months for road users? Where is theTraffic Safety Council of Zimbabwe?
How many roads have been fixed across Zimbabwe in the last 12months? Instead, we have tollgates being increased because, we are told, the money has to go towards road rehabilitation, but one cannot point out any road that has been fixed of late.
The police must put an end to all this nonsense.