Addis Ababa, 14 January 2019 (ECA) - Ms. Mulu Gebregziabher, State Minister of Transport of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia presided over a workshop to validate a report on the road safety performance review of Ethiopia on 14 January 2020 at the United Nations Conference Center in Addis Ababa.
The review was undertaken jointly by the Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) and the Secretariat of the United Nation Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Road Safety, Mr. Jean Todt, in collaboration with the Ministry of Transport of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia.
Speaking at the event, Mr. Stephen Karingi, Officer in Charge of the Private Sector Development and Finance Division of ECA noted that “a combination of improved road coverage, ride quality, and vehicle ownership may have the unintended consequence of increased number of crashes, leading to more injuries and deaths on Ethiopia’s roads – especially if growth in the road network and vehicle ownership are not accompanied by appropriate road safety measures.”
Ethiopia’s road network increased from 26,550 km in 1997 to 126,773 km in 2018, according to the Ethiopian Roads Authority. The number of vehicles in the country increased from 244,257 in 2007 to 708,416 in 2016, an increase of 190%. The reported road crash fatalities in Ethiopia have increased from 2517 in 2006 to 4352 in 2016 – an increase of 72%. WHO estimates the number of fatalities in 2016 to be 27,326 – which is 6 times higher than the reported figure, underscoring the enormity of road safety data challenge in the country.
Recommendations of the validation workshop will be used to finalise the report of the road safety performance review of Ethiopia. The final report will be handed over to the Ethiopian Government by ECA’s Executive Secretary, Ms. Vera Songwe and Mr. Jean Todt. The recommendations will feed into Ethiopia’s national road safety strategy.
ECA and the Secretariat of the UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy have successfully undertaken similar reviews in Cameroon and Uganda and the review of the road safety performance of Zimbabwe is also underway.
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