Road carnage claimed 11 lives over Easter

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Windhoek

Eleven people died over four days during the Easter long weekend, while no less than 121 people sustained injuries. Over the same period last year 21 people lost their lives.

The police also arrested 46 drivers countrywide for driving under the influence of alcohol.

According to preliminary police statistics, 64 accidents occurred over the long weekend, compared to 66 recorded over the same period last year.

The accident statistics were announced by Deputy Inspector General for Operations Major-General James Tjivikua when he presented details of the Easter season road safety operation and crime statistics, recorded between March 25 and 28.

The police jointly agreed with stakeholders in the road safety sub-sector to undertake operations in all 14 regions in order to minimise road carnage and to prevent crime.

Tjivikua said 785 summonses were issued to the tune of N$1.9 million in fines, compared to last year during the same period when 597 summonses were issued, with a combined value of N$1.2 million.

Over the Easter period 18 road traffic checkpoints were set up and 23 008 vehicles stopped. He said 240 drivers were issued fines for speeding, while 91 drivers were unlicensed and 76 vehicles were found to be unlicensed, among other transgressions.

“Law enforcement officials have played a vital role in reducing the accidents and fatalities, although injuries have increased during this period,” he said.

He added that the breathalyser test 7110 is back in use after it was discontinued in 2013 due to legal shortcomings.

A new government Gazette was issued by the Ministry of Works and Transport and the approval of the breathalyser was certified by the Namibia Standards Institute (NSI) in December last year.

He said the instrument is of great assistance to traffic officers and has been used effectively during the past Easter holiday, as is evident from the given statistics.

Meanwhile, Minister of Works and Transport Alpheus !Naruseb was in a celebratory mood yesterday, because even though lives were lost over the Easter weekend the number is not as high as previous years.

“We’re not there yet, but it’s quite pleasing to know that there was a 55% downturn in road accidents,” !Naruseb said at the same press conference.

In total the police recorded 40 criminal incidents over the long weekend, ranging from murder to rape and culpable homicide, among others. Tjivikua said they recorded 11 cases of culpable homicide, three murders and four suicides.

“In terms of serious crimes, Khomas Region was quiet this Easter weekend. Only one case of culpable homicide was recorded,” he stated.

He added that the police confiscated 659 mandrax tablets, 213 pieces of crack cocaine, 99 wraps of dagga, worth N$75 370. Six suspects, three male and three females were arrested in that case.

Tjivikua also said two males were arrested when they were found in possession of controlled wild products.

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