President and Founder of Accident Victim Support Ghana (AVS), Revered Cyril Benedict Crabbe has launched a campaign to raise funds to support road crash victims.
The fund will aid provision of relief items such as wheelchairs, beds, clothes, as well as payment of medical bills for some of the victims who cannot afford treatment.
Launching the projects in Accra recently, Rev. Crabbe stated that about 90 percent of road traffic crashes in the country are a result of human attributes, namely overspeeding, wrong overtaking, drunk driving, red light jumping, avoiding safety gears, non-adherence to lane driving and fatigue driving. All these resulted in the death of about 2,924 people last year.
He said about 12,898 people are either left without limbs or arms, had developed fractures, or were bedridden in 2021 as a result of road traffic crashes.
According to him, the AVS is poised to provide assistance to these victims, but poor access to funds had been the main challenge impeding the NGO’s tracks to reaching its goal.
Rev. Crabbe added that, since any member of the public can fall victim to road traffic crashes, the responsibility lies on individuals, organisations and corporate institutions to contribute their quota towards providing the necessary support to road traffic victims.
“I receive a lot of calls from victims, but I’m unable to help because I sometimes do not have what they are asking for. So, we are launching this to expand our scope and introduce the organisation to the entire country that we are here, and we’ve been doing this for a long time,” he said.
He explained that the funds, when mobilised, would be used for three things – relief for victims, a monument built for crashed victims who got burned beyond recognition, and the NGO’s operations.
“We are really finding it difficult to travel across the country to attend to our operations. The victims, not all of them, need money or recovery aid, but some of them need care, concern and compassion. And we give them.
“So when they call us and we are there, they feel that at least somebody cares for them. The reason is that it is not the situation that they call for, but somebody calls them so they need another person to help them. In situations that you cannot go, they feel that they are lonely, rejected, neglected and nobody cares for them.”
Minister for Roads and Highways Kwasi Amoako-Attah, in a prepared speech read on his behalf, opined that the government was committed to developing and improving measures that would ensure safety and security for all road users through road design, maintenance and the installation of other infrastructures.
He stated that road safety was a major project in the road sector and by which the Highway Ministry was working closely with the National Road Safety Authority (NRSA) and the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Authority to sensitise and educate drivers and road users on the safe use of road infrastructure.
The acting Director-General of NRSA, David Adonteng, said it was unfortunate that the country continues to record a high number of crashes yearly, due to absolute disregard for road safety protocols by both motorists and pedestrians.
He noted that simple obedience to traffic rules and regulations could save the lives of thousands each year.