Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) has unveiled a 10-year road safety vision and action plan that revolves around the Federal Government’s Vision 20:2020 and the global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Its Corps Marshal, Boboye Oyeyemi, laid out the vision in a presentation at an event to mark the 30th anniversary of the establishment of the Corps in Abuja on Monday.
Vision 20:2020 seeks to “launch the nation into a path of sustainable social and economic progress and accelerated emergence of a truly prosperous and united Nigeria’’.
Its overall objective is to place the country among the top 20 economies in the world by the year 2020.
The SDGs, on the other hand, are a collection of 17 global goals set by the United Nations targeting 169 socio-economic issues including poverty, hunger, health, education, climate change and gender inequality.
In the presentation titled; “Celebrating 30 years of Road Traffic Administration and Safety Management in Nigeria’’, Oyeyemi said the FRSC’s vision was hinged on two broad objectives.
According to him, the objectives are optimising human and natural resources to achieving rapid economic growth, and translating the growth into equitable social development for all citizens.
He said the corps’ mandate was relevant in six of the 17 SDGs expected to be achieved by member nations by 2030.
On Goal 2 (end hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition, and promote sustainable agriculture), Mr. Oyeyemi said the corps would ease movement of farm produce across the nation’s roads to the markets.
“Globally, 30 to 50 per cent of food production goes to waste because of inefficient preparation or inadequate storage facilities.
“Therefore, easing the movement of farm produce will reduce losses associated with value degeneration of produce which in turn impacts on profitability and nutritional value.
“Farmers’ interest in agriculture will also increase arising from profitability such that agriculture as alternative national source of income becomes enshrined as many unemployed Nigerians would go into agriculture thereby reducing unemployment.
“Prices of food will also reduce. All of the above will assist to guarantee food security because food security is a condition related to the supply of food, and individuals’ access to it.
The FRSC boss said the corps would intensify efforts to ensure that road traffic accidents did not lead to deaths in line with Goal 3 which targeted healthy living and the well-being of all.
To this end, he said, the corps would improve on its response time to accident scenes and other traffic emergencies, and acquire air ambulance for prompt evacuation of victims.
He explained that the FRSC’s Community First Responder Scheme would equally be enlarged to bring in more communities, while training and development would be enhanced
On Goal 4 (Ensure inclusive, equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all), Oyeyemi said FRSC would upgrade its “Academy to a centre of excellence in road safety management in Africa’’.
“The corps will also provide Post-Graduate Diploma in other fields of endeavour. The Training School will equally be upgraded to a certificate and diploma awarding institution.
“By these, both institutions would create more space for higher education for the teaming Nigerians desiring same,’’ he said.
The FRSC helmsman said that the 10-year vision was also relevant to Goal 11, which borders on making cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable.
To drive attainment of this goal, Mr. Oyeyemi said the FRSC would push for the relocation of human activities such as schools, markets and parks that obstruct traffic.
According to him, this is to ensure safer cities and other human settlements.
He said the corps would do this in collaboration with other stakeholders, including the Society of Town Planners.
“With improved road traffic administration and safety management, Nigerian roads would be safer and attract foreigners to the country who can commute safely without any fear.
“It will also impact on Nigerians as ease of commuting would be enhanced, along with it social activities,’’ Mr. Oyeyemi explained.
On Goal 13 (Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts), Mr. Oyeyemi said periodic technical inspections of vehicles would be made effective.
This, according to him, will ensure that vehicles comply with minimum safety standards.
He said further that the inspection would cover vehicle identification, exhaust emissions, noise emission other safety and environment requirements listed in the United Nations Rule.
To accomplish the goals, the corps marshal said the FRSC would rely on five sources of funding including a Road Safety Fund to be established in line with the provision of the Nigeria Road Safety Strategy.
He said the corps would also exploit the 10 per cent cost of new road construction recommended for road safety enhancement, and partnership funding from international donor agencies/organisations and other partners.