FESTIVE SEASON CELEBRATIONS: Samia stresses road safety

TANZANIA: PRESIDENT Samia Suluhu Hassan has urged citizens travelling during the holiday season to observe road traffic laws, rules and regulations and exercise extra caution to ensure happy celebrations.

The Head of State issued the call on Sunday, wishing Tanzanians happy celebrations during the Christmas and New Year. “In these celebrations, some of you travel from one place to another to join other members of your families, relatives and friends. I urge you to observe the traffic laws and to take extra caution to have a happy week,” Dr Samia wrote on X (formerly Twitter).

Dr Samia stated that this week, as we approach the end of the year 2023, she prays to God for all Tanzanians to celebrate with love, peace, happiness and safety.

“Have a great time with your relatives and friends and may you all return in good health to continue working towards the development of our nation,” she added.

Last Friday, the Police Force vowed that it was taking proactive measures to ensure people’s safety and well-being over the Christmas and New Year. The law enforcement agency unveiled a comprehensive set of strategies designed to prevent crime, enforce road safety rules and uphold public order.

Police Spokesperson Senior Assistant Commissioner of Police (SACP) David Misime said that the Police Force is placing a strong emphasis on education as a key component of its strategy.

“In each region, the Force will implement educational programmes aimed at raising awareness about potential risks, promoting responsible behaviour and disseminating crucial information on crime prevention and personal safety,” SACP Misime said.

To ensure a secure environment, he said the Police Force is planning targeted searches and arrest operations. The efforts will specifically target individuals engaged in criminal activities, including theft, vandalism and other unlawful acts.

SACP Misime further said the Police Force is intensifying efforts to enforce road safety rules, especially during this holiday season. He said measures will be taken against drivers who violate traffic laws, engage in reckless behaviour, or compromise road safety.

According to the Police spokesperson, the overall security situation in the nation remains predominantly stable. Both major and minor crimes are effectively managed through a range of strategies meticulously designed and consistently executed.

“These initiatives actively engage citizens and various stakeholders in the ongoing efforts to prevent criminal activities and minimise road accidents. “The primary objective of these strategies is to maintain a proactive stance, ensuring preparedness at all times to prevent the occurrence of crimes and mitigate potential harm. By involving the community and relevant stakeholders, these measures aim to foster a collective commitment to crime prevention and road safety, emphasising the importance of constant vigilance and collaborative action.” he explained.

During this season, the Police Force also issued a warning to parents and guardians not to let their kids go to areas where gatherings are permitted unless they have an adult or sane adult with them to watch over and lead them.

Nevertheless, while the Police Force maintains a well-organised approach to security, SACP Misime said it consistently urges the public to recognise that individual responsibility plays a pivotal role in ensuring safety.

This includes taking measures such as not leaving homes unattended to prevent potential security risks. Furthermore, he said for those using the roads, the public is strongly advised to refrain from dangerous behaviours, including speeding, driving under the influence and attempting overtaking manoeuvres in areas with limited visibility, such as corners and slopes.

“These actions pose significant risks and can lead to accidents that compromise both individual safety and the well-being of others on the road,” SACP Misime noted.

The Police Force also emphasises the importance of peaceful celebrations, urging citizens to refrain from engaging in disruptive activities such as burning tires on the road, breaking bottles and resorting to violence.

SACP Misime further said instead, the public is encouraged to celebrate and rejoice in an atmosphere of peace, promoting harmony within the community and ensuring that festivities contribute positively to the overall safety and well-being of all citizens.

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