Wednesday, November 16, 2011

2nd African Road Safety Conference - An Opinion Piece from a young delegate

Wednesday, November 16, 2011
By: Brian Kanaahe Mwebaze Bilal

YOURS is proud to have one its active young spokespeople for road safety Mr Brian Mwebaze from Uganda report back from the 2nd African Road Safety Conference. Brian has written his own report from his own opinion and YOURS gives Brian the opportunity to provide his analysis from a young person's perspective. 

Please note that opinions expressed in this article are that of Mr Brian Mwebaze (who is a national of Uganda), more information can be found at his blog. YOURS gives young people an open platform to debate their opinions.

Was It A Wastage Of $$? My Analysis Of The 2nd African Conference On Road Safety-Ethiopia.

We are all used to this, aren’t we? Decision makers attending to conferences half way only to appear on the last minute to sign for their perdiems, poor participation and involvement of relevant stakeholders, domination of discussions on key topics, and a consistent wave of general unseriousness? That was typical of International African Conferences>>>>Am not kidding by the way, we have records that were set by some African Leaders in 1978 during the formation of Alma Alta Declaration on Primary Health Care! As some news paper (which ofcourse Iam not gonna write here) later reported, ‘Participants from Africa were a disgrace to the conference, sometimes daring to appear with their spouses in the conference hall’. We know that Africans did not understand the rules of the game as regards the primary health care approach…and you know the story concerning the public health arena in Africa. 

But that was years ago…and here is my analysis of the 2nd African Conference on Road Safety…

There was a sheer brilliance of representation of all the key stakeholders that are involved in the game of road safety in Africa. As we know it, Health Education x Healthy public policy=Health Promotion! I have this feeling that the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa and the Ethiopian government who were organizing this conference had some good public health brains on their steering committee! Sub-Saharan Africa Transport Policy Program (SSATP); Global Road Safety Facility (GRSF); Government of Ethiopia; and International Road Federation (IRF) in collaboration with the African Union Commission, the African Development Bank and the World Bank were also part of the team.

The second African Road Safety Conference kicked off on Wednesday 9th Nov 2011 in Addis Ababa Ethiopia at the UN-ECA conference center with an aim of examining and validating African Road Safety Action Plan being devised for the coming decade following the UN recommendation on the first conference held in February 2007 in Accra. It should be noticed that participants were drawn from nearly all African countries and International Road Federation were deliberating on the five pillar issues of the coming decade road safety action plan namely road safety management, safer road and mobility, safer vehicles, safer road users and post crash responses.

Editorial Team.
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