Eswatini launches first national Road Strategy and Center of Excellence on Road Safety

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The Kingdom of Eswatini created a road safety strategy for the years 2023–2030 to direct its national road safety agenda. All deadly and serious accidents on the road, according to Kingdom officials, are avoidable. The goal is to have no fatalities or major injuries on Eswatini’s roadways by 2063.

 

The Eswatini Prime Minister, Cleopas Sipho Dlamini, highlighted in his keynote speech the advantages of the safe system approach to road safety contained in the strategy, noting that “humans are prone to make errors in judgment and poor decisions and that the approach incorporates this reality in the design and operation of the road network.” He also expressed gratitude for the process’ assistance from ECA and advocated the Strategy’s successful implementation.

 

The majority of traffic accidents in the kingdom, according to Fortunate Shabalala, chair of the Kingdom of Eswatini’s Road Safety Council, were caused by human error. She emphasized that traffic accidents are an unsustainable burden on communities and an unacceptable cost of economic growth.

 

Antonio Pedro, the Acting Executive Secretary of ECA, was represented by Robert Lisinge, Officer in Charge of the Private Sector Development and Finance Division, who stated that ECA assisted the Kingdom of Eswatini in formulating the Strategy. He advised that in carrying out the Strategy, emphasis be given to “strengthening the Kingdom’s road safety legislative framework, strengthening road safety funding arrangements, and building capacity of road safety stakeholders.”

 

The launch is in line with ECA’s mandate, which calls on the World Health Organization (WHO) and UN regional commissions to support the implementation of the UN Road safety Global action plan for the Decade 2021–2023, along with all other relevant parties. This call was made by the UN General Assembly.

 

Following the launch, a Memorandum of Understanding on the Implementation of the Center of Excellence on Road Safety was signed between the University of Eswatini and the Ministry of Public Works and Transport.

 

Other dignitaries in attendance at the launch included the UN Country Representative George Wachira, Vice Chancellor Justice M. Thwala of the University of Eswatini, and Minister Thulani Mkhaliphi of Public Works and Transport.

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