Emergency Budget catered for safer roadways
– Minister Edghil
Minister of Public Works Hon. Bishop Juan Edghill has said budgetary allocations have been made to create safer roadways, which the Government hopes will stem the alarming increase in fatal accidents.
The Minister made the statement today at the launch of the Guyana National Road Safety Council’s (GNRSC) competition for the 2020 to 2021 road safety theme.
For the period January 1 to October 5, 2020, there were a total of 103 accidents with 112 deaths as opposed to 70 accidents with 74 deaths over the same period last year.
The Minister said provisions were made for roads under the Urban Improvement Programme, and in keeping with a Manifesto promise to make roads safer.
“In our 2020 Budget, we have allocated funds and identified vulnerable locations that we intend to implement highway lighting, which is aimed at improving security and visibility for road users,” Minister Edghill said.
Funds will also be allocated in the 2021 Budget for other road infrastructure.
“In our 2021 Budget, we will allocate funds to install bicycle lanes where the space is available, highway lighting and improving the geometry to critical sections of our roads, additional traffic signs, traffic signals and, not forgetting, the construction of pedestrian overpasses and walkways,” Minister Edghill said.
According to statistics from the Guyana Police Force, the leading cause of road accidents in Guyana continues to be driving under the influence of alcohol. With that, Minister Edghill made it clear that no effort will be spared as the Government seeks to identify measures that can be implemented to makes the country’s roadways safe. The government intends to work with all stakeholders, both locally and internationally to ensure road users have a safe environment.
“We will ensure that we improve road designs, implement speed reducing measures and equip our law enforcement officers with the right tools aimed at reducing accidents both fatal and non-fatal,” the Minister said.
Minster Edghill reminded stakeholders that his Ministry is mandated to implement sustainable measures to safeguard Guyana’s vulnerable category of road users by effecting engineering measures on all of the country’s roads.