18 December 2012

Uganda: Beer Firm Fights Drunk-Driving

Uganda Breweries Ltd (UBL) has struck an odd partnership with the police to fight drink-driving this festive season.

Dubbed Red Card: Zero Tolerance to Drunk Driving, the campaign will offer a soft landing for drunken motorists in Kampala who, instead of being arrested and arraigned in court, will instead be driven back home. Launched on Monday, the six-week-long campaign follows a realization that the number of accidents related to drink driving are on a steady rise in Kampala, despite a tough crackdown by Police.

Police has in the past slapped hefty fines and 'named and shamed' regular offenders by publishing their faces and names in the media.

"This is just a supplementary effort to the various anti-drink-driving campaigns that are currently running," UBL publicist Richard Wabwire told guests at Kibuli Police Training School on Monday.

Wejuli explained that the Red Card campaign would display telephone numbers that drivers can use in participating bars.

"All you have to do is simply dial the number and our driver will come and drive you home safely. You only pay the driver for his services," Wabwire told guests, explaining that the campaign will eventually spread out of Kampala after the festive season.

The drivers in the campaign are drawn from the Association of Special Hire Drivers and Taxis (ASHDT). The police has deployed 300 police constables in the campaign.

"We have come to appreciate that drinking is part of our culture but we must do it responsibly to protect lives. We are giving motorists a chance to drink without fear of being arrested," said Kampala Metropolitan Police commander Andrew Felix Kaweesi.

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