BY PAUL OMBATI | Wakajuaness.Com
“We have reached a point where the incompetent NTSA should be replaced by displined Kenya Defence Forces in manning our roads.” ~ Paul Ombati
We wished to wake up on Monday with good news of the new year newly-born and social media users flooding the Internet with thousands of selfies and photos of fireworks nicing up our moods.
This was to stanza the kind of the year that everyone was looking forward to until photos of a crucially damaged bus and a truck with a mutilated forehead spoiled those moods on the eve of the new year: 36 people including two babies aged below six months had just perished in an grisly accident along Nakuru-Eldoret highway.
That a picture speaks a thousand words raised a thousand lingering questions on how crucial that particular accident was and for how long should these road madness continue.
It has been a Black December on our roads. Our friends, relatives and workmates have departed in this cruel manner with several others fighting for their lives in various hospitals, nursing terrible injuries that have left them psychologically damaged.
One would think that the more the accidents occur, and more they become normal but in this case, the more these road tragedies occur, they more strange they become
It has been a custom year in-year-out. The now famous Salgaa Blackspot has claimed thousands of lives in the last decade with fading hopes of finding a lasting solution to curb these ‘carelesss’ deaths.
The National Transport and Safety Authority NTSA, a body tasked with bringing sanity on our roads, has clearly demonstrated that they are ready to over-see more millions of Kenyans perish on our roads provided the officers pocket billions of shillings from incompetent drivers.
The NTSA officials have reportedly been collecting bribes in millions of shillings on daily basis, the money they share with their bosses right from the top.
To appear like they are doing some work, the callous NTSA has now issued a cluelessly ridiculous ban on night travels for Public Service Vehicle.
The night travel for long distance journeys explains well the trait of man-eat-man society in Francis Imbuga’s Betrayal in the City.
The ban is a total joke, a insinuation by NTSA that darkness is the cause of these accidents that ironically happen during the day. It’s Hypocritical! It is this culture of hypocrisy that we, the Kenyans, have embraced. We no longer call a spade a spade and a spoon a spoon.
This is exactly what we are suffering from, what we will suffer from and even what our future generations will suffer from.
Already, a hashtag #DisbandNTSA has started on twitter to disband the NTSA and that is the only way to stop them from sacrificing innocent lives on our roads for the sake of their hanging tummies. But the question is, who will replace the NTSA in manning these busy roads?
The anwer is simple: Our legislators should pass a bill allowing our displined Kenya Defence Forces to man our roads instead of these murderous NTSA.
Thousands of Kenyans cannot be brought to suffering because of individual greed and negligence. Many people’s travelling plans have been blackened by such fake measures.
Roads are the widely used means of transport on Kenya and of course they are less compared to the number of road users. Banning night travels will even conjest these roads more than ever thought as students, researchers and business people rely on roads for transportation.
There is a need for solution on the movement of these trucks, there is need for increase in awareness for the drivers, there is need for transport companies to play their roles majorly on drivers and vehicles worthiness.
Above all, the government must play a bigger role. These highways can be dual-way. Tough measures must be put at stake. Railway construction must be hastened, Kenyans must have the privilege and pride of their nation.
It’s a high time we say no this blood sucking road accidents, we have to come together the way we fight terrorism and see sage travels. It’s ample time we can travel and be sure of travelling safely.
Even as we usher in the new year, Let’s remember the departed souls in our prayers and support victims of accidents fighting for their lives in hospital. One measure of kindness will give them comfort.
I wish you all a Blessed and graceful safe new year 2018.