DETERMINED to reduce road accidents particularly motorcycles— bodaboda—related, the government intends to set rules, which will direct every motorcycle operator/rider to have health insurance before processing the driving licence.
The Ministries of Health, Community Development, Gender, Elderly and Children and Home Affairs are jointly working on the initiative, the Health Minister, Ms Ummy Mwalimu said in Dar es Salaam yesterday.
She revealed the initiative while launching the Indian sponsored 'Artificial limb fitment project camp' at Muhimbili Orthopaedic Institute (MOI).
The Indian government disbursed 700m/- for the camp that targets to benefit a total of 600 physically-impaired people from across the country.
Launching the camp, the minister affirmed that the number of road accident victims at MOI has been increasing especially after motorcycle operators entered into the business.
"Currently, MOI receives between 500 and 600 road accident victims monthly, unlike the past—before the entry of bodaboda business—when the institute used to receive between 200 and 400 victims," she said.
According to the minister, the target beneficiaries for the launched artificial limb fitment camp were 500 but the number increased to 900 with the large per cent of the needy being road accident victims.
Only 600 persons will benefit with the on-going project while the government seeks other means to attend to the rest, said Ms mwalimu. She reminded members of the public to go for insurance covers to ease medical services to everybody.
The minister appreciated India for her continuous support to Tanzania's health sector, citing the 2bn/- medical equipment and drug that the Indian government released in September last year.
According to the Minister, India also promised to give another 2bn/- medical equipment support to Tanzania in the nearest future.
"Because I have received the good news in this event here, a portion of the 500m/- drugs and medical equipment will be allocated to MOI and the rest will be distributed to other areas," she promised.
Indian High Commissioner to Tanzania Sundeep Arya affirmed that apart from the fund for artificial camp, India also dispatched a technical team of seven specialists from Bhagwan Mahaveer Viklang Sahayata Samiti (BMVSS), Jaipur (India) to offer charge-free consultations to the end of the exercise in July.
He said that the camp was providing physical, economic and social rehabilitation by helping the victims to regain their mobility and dignity as well as becoming self-respecting and productive members of the society.
Mahatma Gandhi said 'the best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others’. Mahatma Gandhi's life and work continues to inspire millions of people in India and around the world in various ways, including community service, said the high commissioner.
“The artificial limbs fitment camp in Dar es Salaam is inspired by the life and message of Mahatma Gandhi," added Mr Arya.