The National Orientation Agency (NOA) in collaboration with security agencies and community associations in Oyo State on Tuesday embarked on a road show to create awareness for commercial and private motorists on the need to shun drunken and reckless driving as the yuletide approaches.
The awareness and sensitization rally on ‘Road Safety in the Ember months and Beyond’, led by Dolapo Dosunmu, Oyo State director of NOA, took the campaigners to some major areas of Ibadan, the state capital, notably Oje Market, Idi-Ayunre near Gate, Beere and terminated in front of the historic Mapo Hall.
The rally party distributed handbills and pamphlets with messages warning against road accidents and other hazards associated with insouciant attitudes of the people especially during the yuletide season.
Addressing commercial motorists and motor-cyclists comprising mainly members of the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW), the NOA director urged them to keep strictly to road safety measures and shun the ugly notion and fears commonly associated with December, in some circle, as a demonic month laden with the prevalence of road accidents.
“We are our own demon. Nigeria alone, according to available statistics, contributes 50% of 1.3million road accidents across the globe. Whereas other developed countries are inching towards a zero-accident rate in the ember months, we seem to be fixated on one spot. We just have to change,” she said.
"It is left to us to prevent road accidents in this crucial period and shun those negative attitudes such as drunkenness, waywardness, drug addiction, carelessness, dereliction, insouciance and other invidious acts that may cut down our lives in their prime."
She also enjoined motorists to be cautious of their health status by avoiding stress and ensure that they only drive when they are in stable health condition. In addition, she said, they should also ensure that their vehicles and other means of transportation are in good stead.
"It takes a little effort to prevent accident from happening than to rescue victims in an emergency or to even imagine the rigorous pains one suffers as a victim, if we are lucky to even survive," the NOA state director said.