PW 2614 The role of civil societies in road safety law reforms: the case of tanzania

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Abstract

The United Republic of Tanzania has in the recent past featured prominently in the WHO’s Global Accident Status Report due to its higher figures of injuries and mortalities occasioned by accidents. Additionally, Tanzania has made commitments to reduce accidents by 50% as part of its commitment in the Decade of Action for Road Safety, 2010 – 2020. In order to achieve the intended target and meet its commitments, it was proposed as one of the quick wins, to amend the Road Traffic Act of 1973 with a view to addressing the shortcomings in the laws that leads to increase of accidents focusing on the five risk factors of speeding, helmet use, seat belt us, drink driving and use of child restraints. Realising that time towards 2020 is approaching and Tanzania has not made any serious efforts to amend the Road Traffic Act, several civil societies in Tanzania decided to take the matter in their own hands and be part of the change by forming a coalition of CSO’s geared towards advocating for change of traffic laws. To achieve its intended objectives the following achievements have been registered so far: a. To formally register the coalition and make it known to relevant stakeholders in the executive and in the legislature b. Submitted to the Government a matrix of the relevant sections of the road Traffic Act to be amended c. Train officials from the Executive Branch and Legislature on the proposed changes and the reasoning behind the changes d. Participating in various advocacy activities to champion the proposed changes With the participation of the CSO and the exerted pressure we have noticed that the pace towards the amendments has quickened and the government has now resolved to present the amendments to the parliament in 2018.

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