Congo Town — Government through the Ministries of Public of Education and Public Works as well as its partners from the National World Safety Secretariat has launched the first Road Safety Book, under the Title "A Safe Way to School.
Then book launch comes at a time in Liberia where there is practically no road safety education, neither for adults nor for children, while educatory materials on road safety are lacking at various institutions of learning.
It is launch under the project, Capacity Development in the Transport Sector in Liberia aims at addressing the poor road safety gap.
To cover this gap, the project "Capacity Development in the Transport Sector in Liberia," implemented by the GIZ, has come up with the idea of a compilation of such an illustrative schoolbook for younger school students, focusing on basic traffic rules.
The objective was to develop and formalize educative information on safe behavior on roads appropriate for children in form of a book containing a story, illustrations, exercises, and handouts adapted to the local context and thematizing road safety problems in Liberia.
GIZ is collaborating with various governmental and non-governmental stakeholders, including, Ministry of Education, Liberia National Police, Road Safety Secretariat, NGOs in the field of education (EDC, Rising Academy), LNP Road Safety Volunteers among others.
These institutions will be using such a schoolbook in their education and awareness activities. Besides, certain parts of the book will be used in road safety awareness via social media.
At the launch of the book which is geared at encouraging readers, (mostly children 8-12 years old, school students) to be careful on the road, explain safe ways of crossing the road, to buckle up seatbelts as a passenger in a car, to wear helmets while riding a motorcycle and to wear bright clothes to be visible at night, among others, Education Minister D. Ansu Sonii stressed the need that every citizen take the issue of road safety seriously.
This, according to Minister Sonii, was to curb the wave of road accidents, calling for increase awareness on road safety in early childhood, basic and secondary education for children to understand basic issues of road safety.
"Recklessness has a way of claiming the lives of those who are not reckless, Minister Sonii said Thursday, when he jointly launched the first road safety book in Liberia alongside Acting Public Works Minister Ruth Cooker-Collins.
"Driving is a profession, driving is a habit, driving is a job and whichever category you fall in, the movement of the vehicle is not fun."
Minister Sonii hailed partners in the road safety sector for combining up with such an instrument, which he said would drive the way for a reduction in accident cases.
He, however, appealed to partners for the production of additional books that will illustrate signs for those who are illiterate.
Currently, the production of 125,000 copies of the schoolbook "A Safe Way to School" for public schools is being procured and operationalized through the World Bank, which is partnering with and is being advised by the GIZ in the field of road safety.
For her part, Acting Minister Cooker-Collins attributed the joint efforts of various ministries and partner concern with road safety as one that will continue to positively affect policy passengers, and vehicles conductors themselves.
"We remain certain that the book, "A Safe Way to School," would provide our students the basic necessity and reduce fatality on roads in the country," Minister Cooker-Collins averred.
In his introductory remarks, the Coordinator of the National Road Safety Secretariat, Samuel Wannasue believe road safety is not a serious problem to Liberia only, but the world at large, as such, he sees the launch of the first-ever road safety book as one that will inform Liberian on safety precautions.
He wants the Ministry of Education to use the book's first 125 thousand copies that have been produced, as part of her awareness of road safety at schools.
About the project
The project "Capacity Development in the Transport Sector" is being implemented by GIZ on behalf of the Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development of Germany (BMZ) and co-funded by the EU. In this context, the Project supported the Liberian Govbook'sent in the development of the RohaveFund Act and its operationalization, in the development of a Curriculum and qualifying young people through Road Maintenance and Construction Training, in advising in the field of road safety management, awareness, and enforcement.