Lusaka, Zambia, Wednesday, 28thJune 2017: The Zambia Road Safety Trust (ZRST) has launched a road safety programme aimed at improving child road safety at Muchinga Primary School in Zingalume Compound in Lusaka. The Trust received K88,900 funding from PUMA Energy Zambia plc to support various road safety initiatives aiming at educating all road users.
In Zambia, road traffic deaths and injuries represent a serious and rapidly worsening public health crisis. According to the Zambia Police, the number of road deaths on Zambian roads increased from 1,858 in 2014 to 2,206 in 2016 representing an increase of 18 percent, hence the need to support government efforts to double up the efforts. Among these were vulnerable children who face grave risks as they walk to and from school every day.

Minister of Transport & Communications, Permanent Secretary: Micheck Lungu
“The government is committed to ensuring that the message of road safety awareness is ingrained in the younger generation. In our efforts to encourage greater community involvement, the strong support provided by socially responsible corporate partners such as Puma Energy Zambia is invaluable and will contribute to government’s attainment of this objective. We are most appreciative of Puma Energy Zambia plc for the continued support to sponsor Road Safety programmes such as this one and for their generous contributions”.

ZRST’s partnership with PUMA Energy will strive to change unsafe behaviour on the roads and to protect school-going children from road traffic injury. It will implement vital road safety activities in Zambia including co-ordinating road safety education programmes and conducting government and media advocacy.

The organisations started with Muchinga Primary School as their first project because of its location in one of the most deprived urban areas in Lusaka and because four pupils have been injured in road traffic in the last year alone.

ZRST Chairman, Daniel Mwamba said:
“Road safety is no accident. Road safety happens through the deliberate efforts of many individuals and many sectors of society, governmental and non-governmental alike. Every one of us has a role to play: ministers of transport, health and education; teachers; students; insurers;; the media and victims of road traffic crashes and their families. But a strong commitment at the political level is crucial. Today’s success stories often result from a decision at the highest level of government to improve safety on the road.”
PUMA Energy Zambia trusts that its involvement in road safety will save lives on the roads as well as demonstrate the company’s commitment to road safety worldwide.
Mr Jacob Sikazwe; Chairman Puma Energy Zambia Plc commented:
“I am pleased to announce that this year, Puma Energy Zambia continue to support the government to reduce road accidents in Zambia. Besides today’s’ launch of this Child Road Safety Education Programme at Muchinga Primary School, we are sponsoring a road safety programme which will air on radio for 3 months and mini-bus drivers road safety awareness programme at bus stations in Lusaka”.

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Notes for Editors:
The Zambia Road Safety Trust (ZRST)
The Zambia Road Safety Trust (ZRST), a not for profit organisation, seeks to create awareness on road safety and contribute towards reduction in road traffic crashes, injuries and fatalities. Zambia, with almost 2,000 deaths in road crashes per year, is one of the worst performing countries, as far as road safety is concerned. The trust has a particular role to play in terms of personalising the Road Safety Issue, creating a sense of urgency and generating a demand for safety from the public.www.zambianroadsafety.org

PUMA Energy
PUMA Energy is expanding its retail activities across Africa and worldwide. Recognizing thatthe low and middle-income countries where PUMA Energy operates often have extraordinarily high rates of road traffic injury, PUMA Energy is committed to undertaking activities to make roads safer.http://www.pumaenergy.com/en

Global figures on road accidents:
• 1.24 million road deaths occur every year
• More than 50 million people are seriously injured every year
• There are 3,500 deaths a day or 150 every hour, and nearly three people get killed on the road every minute
• US$3 trillion is the cost of road crashes every year

For queries contact:
Email: info@zambianroadsafety.org
Tel: +260953736461 / +260961475610