KAMPALA – Uganda Red Cross Society, Prudential Uganda and Prudence Foundation have launched the SAFE STEPS road safety campaign, a public service programme aimed at raising awareness about road safety, by providing clear and simple life-saving messages on road safety.
The initiative was created and developed by Prudence Foundation, the community investment arm of Prudential, in partnership with the Federation Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA), International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) and Didier Drogba Foundation, working with Didier Drogba as the Safe Steps Africa ambassador.
Launched in Kampala on Thursday, the programme targets 10,000 boda-boda riders within the Kampala Metropolitan Area (Kampala, Entebbe, Wakiso and Mukono). The campaign will run for six months starting 1″ September 2022 to February 2023.
“The Safe Steps campaign aims to raise awareness and provide easy-to-understand educational information on road safety and we are delighted to see it launched here in Uganda following success in other countries on the continent including Ivory Coast, Ghana, Zambia and Kenya,” said Marc Fancy, the Executive Director of Prudence Foundation.
“Prudential and Prudence Foundation are very focused on doing good. We aim to help families and communities be safer, more secure and more resilient by addressing key issues in education. health and safety. These key issues align to the DNA of Prudential and are areas we believe we can make a real impact. We are very proud to be partnering with the Red Cross in Uganda and help boda-bodas have access to road safety training and life-saving emergency care skills,” he said.
Tetteh Ayitevie, the CEO Prudential Uganda says Prudential is intentional about addressing issues that affect the livelihoods of the people in the communities in which the business operates.
“Prudential is intentional about doing good, we make this possible by making communities safer, more secure and resilient by addressing key issues in education, health and safety. We make this possible by making communities safer, more secure and resilient by addressing key issues in education, health and safety. These key issues align to the work of Prudential and are areas we believe we can make a real impact. We are happy to partner with Road Cross in Uganda to help boda bodas access trainings on road safety and life-saving emergency care skills,” he said.
The Secretary General, Uganda Red Cross Society, Kwesiga Robert said, “At URCS, we are committed to road safety and recognize the rapid escalation of Uganda’s road safety crisis Prudential Uganda’s partnership with URCS to implement the Safe Steps campaign by Prudence Foundation will go a long way in encouraging road safety and saving the lives of Ugandans.”
Officiating at the event, the Minister of Works and Transport, Gen Katumba Wamala commended Prudential Uganda and Uganda Red Cross Society for implementing the Safe Steps road safety campaign in Uganda and specifically reaching out to the boda-boda community in the Kampala Metropolitan area.
“Statistics in the Annual Crime and Traffic/Road Safety report highlight the need to heighten awareness and education on road safety 1,390 accidents by motorcyclists is not a small number and I am glad that Safe Steps initiative which will go a long way in contributing to the reduction of these numbers by reminding boda-boda riders about the importance of being safe on the road,” Katumba added.
According to him, road crashes continue to increase with the latest Traffic Police report of 2021 indicating that 4,159 people were killed and 12,589 were seriously injured in road crashes. This was an increase from the 3,663 killed and 8,370 seriously injured in 2020.
He said that out of the 4,159 people killed, in 2021, 1,390 were motorcyclists accounting for the highest number of road user group killed.
“This does not include the motorcycle passengers who were 528. This implies that motorcycle (Boda bodas) riders are at a very high risk, and this is mostly attributed to their behavior while using the road.”
Minister Katumba revealed that Uganda is currently implementing the second UN Decade of Action for Road Safety which set a target of reducing road crash deaths and injuries by 50% by 2030.
“It is therefore encouraging to know that Uganda Red Cross Society is in partnership with Prudential Uganda for such a noble cause.”
The campaign will also feature a series of 60-second public service announcement videos and educational posters featuring Safe Steps Road Safety Africa Ambassador, Didier Drogba, who offers advice on key road safety topics such as drunk driving, distracted driving, use of seat belts, respecting speed limits, motorcycles and pedestrians.