Under the auspices and in the presence of the Minister of State for Interior Affairs HE Sheikh Abdullah bin Nasser bin Khalifa Al Thani, the 'National Traffic Safety Strategy 2013-2022' was launched today (Sunday, January 13, 2013) morning at Katara auditorium in Doha. The Strategy was prepared by the National Committee for Traffic Safety in cooperation with Public Works Authority 'Ashghal' and a number of other agencies.
Minister of Municipality and Urban Planning HE Sheikh Abdul Rahman bin Khalifa Al Thani, Minister of Education and Higher Education and Secretary General of Supreme Education Council HE Saad bin Ibrahim Al Mahmoud, Minister of Awqaf and Islamic Affairs HE Dr.Ghaith bin Mubarak bin Imran AlKuwari, Director General of Public Security Staff Maj. Gen. Saad bin Jassim Al Khulaifi, Assistant Chief of Staff for Operations and Training Maj. Gen. Ghanim bin Shaheen Al Ghanim and President of Ashghal Eng. Nasser Ali Al Moulavi attended the Strategy launching ceremony.
The National Strategy for Traffic Safety aims at reducing the number of the victims of the traffic accidents and decreasing the number of deaths resulted from road accidents annually, along with reducing the number of major injuries caused by traffic accidents.
The high concern given by the officials of the State for the issue of traffic safety has impelled the Council of Ministers to issue the decree No. 33/2010, ratified by HH the Deputy Emir and Heir Apparent was issued on 22 July 2010, to form the National Committee for Traffic Safety under the chairmanship of the Minister of State for Interior Affairs HE Sheikh Abdullah bin Nasser bin Khalifa Al Thani. The National Committee for Traffic Safety developed this Strategy for enhancing the commitment on traffic safety and to work on reducing the human suffering caused by traffic accidents
After launching the Strategy, HE the Minister of State for Interior Affairs received a copy of the 'National Traffic Safety Strategy' from Mr. Talib Afeefah, one of the traffic accidents victims in Qatar.
In a statement to the media after the launching ceremony, HE Sheikh Abdullah bin Nasser bin Khalifa Al Thani emphasized that the National Strategy for Traffic Safety has been drafted in cooperation with many agencies on the base of 'Qatar's vision 2030' and 'National Development Strategy 2011-2016', with the aim of reducing traffic accidents and decreasing the deaths resulted from road accidents. The launch of the strategy is the first step towards achieving its goal of raising the standard of traffic safety on the roads of Qatar in order to reach to the result which is reduction of the traffic accidents which will lead to decreasing the number of deaths and major injuries, HE the Minister pointed out.
The Chairman of the National Committee for Traffic Safety also clarified that the Ministry of Interior will work hard, utilizing its all possible means to reduce the traffic accidents, where it will review and follow up continuously the issue of traffic accidents through cooperation between Ashghal and Traffic Department as our objective that we want to accomplish is the reduction of traffic accidents.
The traffic law applicable in the country at present has contributed largely in reducing the number of traffic accidents and deaths, which was 270 in 2006, while it was decreased to 204 in the year of 2012 and this is considered as a huge decrease in the ratio of deaths while the numbers of the vehicles have been increased in the country and this is the result of the implementation of the traffic law and it is a successful law that contributed to the reduction of the traffic accidents and decrease of the ratio of the deaths in the country, HE the Minister of State for Interior Affairs stated.
The Director General of Public Security HE Major General Saad Bin Jassim Al Khulaifi of described National Strategy for Traffic Safety as a road map for a safe road transport system that protect all road users from death and serious injury. He stressed that the strategy provides more than 220 Plans for traffic safety which will be implemented by the concerned authorities.
Secretary of the National Committee for Traffic Safety and traffic expert at the Ministry of Interior Brig. Mohammed Abdullah Almalki, said that the Strategy is a fruitful result of strenuous efforts made by the relevant authorities of traffic safety. It was developed through great cooperation with the consulting firm that undertook a comprehensive study and assessment of all elements of traffic safety for a whole year.
“As the transportation safety is an important foundation to achieve sustainable human development, State has accorded it top priority and a decision in this regard was taken by the Council of Ministers and it was ratified by HH the Heir Apparent. The Heir Apparent ordered establishment of a national committee that will be responsible for traffic safety policy-making in the state”, said Brig. Al-Maliki. As a result, the Minister of State for Interior Affairs constituted the National Committee for Traffic Safety headed by His Excellency and represented by nine other institutions related to traffic safety.
On his part, head of Public Works Authority (Ashgal) Eng. Nasser Ali Al-Mawlawi expressed confidence that the great efforts behind the national strategy for traffic safety will result in increasing safety on the roads in the state. He said: We had the honor of participation in the development of this strategy, which sets a clear roadmap towards a long-term vision to develop a safe road transport system.
“By implementing this National Strategy for Traffic Safety, our aim is to reduce the death rate due to traffic accidents to 130 from the present number of 220 and cases of serious injuries to the rate of 300 compared to the present rate of 550 injuries per year”, said Al-Mawlawi.
He noted that 200 action plans will be carried out during the next five years 2013-2017, whereas 13 different agencies will take part in these initiatives as part of implementing National Strategy.
He pointed out that these executive plans contain a wide range of practical initiatives in the areas of road safety, such as engineering standards related to traffic safety, pedestrian facilities, vehicle safety, driving license, legislation, and awareness building.
During a press conference held after the launch of the strategy, Brigadier Mohammad al-Maliki the secretary of the National Committee for Traffic Safety said that the strategy will be implemented in two phases; short term phase for period of five years, and long-term phase for the next ten years. Brigadier al-Maliki pointed out that HE the Minister of State for Interior Affairs will supervise and follow up the implementation in his capacity as the chairman of the National Committee for Traffic Safety.
Eng. Yousuf Al Emadi,Vice-chairman of national committee of traffic safety said that the responsibility is not only on the Ministry of the Interior or the Public Works Authority but also it is required from all and all must work to reach the desired goal.