The Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) said it had recorded a notable 62.4 per cent reduction in Road Traffic Crashes (RTCs) in the country from 40,881 in 1976 to 25,792 in 1988, its first operational year alone.
The Corps Public Education Officer (CPEO), Assistant Corps Marshal (ACM) Bisi Kazeem, disclosed while speaking to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), on Friday, in Abuja, as the Corps celebrates its 33 years of existence, having been established on Feb. 18, 1988.
Kazeem said the ugly narrative of RTCs in the early 1970s changed through Federal Government’s resilience in the establishment of the FRSC in 1988, noting that 1976 was the year with the highest recorded cases of road traffic crashes in Nigeria’s history at 40, 881.
He said that the Corps had, therefore, defined its course in tandem with the UN Decade of Action on road safety, as well as promoted its mantra of a functional 21st century organisation by charting a path to meet the Accra Declaration of 50 per cent reduction in fatality by 2015.
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Kazeem said the FRSC had achieved the UN decade of action on road Safety of 50 per cent fatality reduction by 2021, and the rollover of UN Decade of Action to 2031, having continued to doggedly fight RTCs from 40,881 in 1976 to 522 in 2020.
The CPEO said that as the statistics had shown the corps was gaining grounds, and had remained focused at ensuring safety at all levels, especially given the paradigm shift in road safety administration in the country from a Traditional Approach to Safe Systems Approach that leverages the use of state of the art Information Technology facilities.
“The corps has now come of age after going through good times and rough tides. As a performance driven organisation with clearly set out measurable Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), FRSC is today, the only law enforcement organisation in Nigeria certified by the International Standards Organisation.
“In its 33 years as lead agency in traffic and safety management, FRSC has recorded tremendous achievements in the area of Traffic Engineering, Road Safety Administration, Traffic Management, Rescue Operation, and Crash Reduction.
” It has achieved this glorious feat as a result of a chain of leadership ingenuity that led to the fusion of the services of volunteers, called Special Marshals and Social Responsibility Groups, in its programmes to enhance road safety management in Nigeria, ” he said.
Kazeem said the corps had also been able to enhance its operational capacity of promoting public safety and security, saying that the corps, under different governmental and administrative leaderships, had proven its ability to reduce road traffic crashes in the past 33 years.
The FRSC spokesperson said that the corps’ success story had been attributed to its establishment under the Presidency, with a clear mandate and budget.
He also enumerated other components of the story to its introduction of a world class drivers’ licensing standard, which was difficult to forge, and the building and retention of a dedicated work force, including regular marshals, a volunteer arm and optimal deployment of technology, all of which had been unparalleled in sub-Saharan Africa.
Kazeem urged the general public to continue to adhere strictly to traffic rules and regulations to ensure zero crashes on Nigeria’s roads.