Puma ploughs back to community with road safety initiative

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IN response to road traffic deaths and fatal accident, Puma Energy PLC in partnership with Amend has embarked on a journey towards change by launching the Be Road Safe Africa Campaign in Zambia.

The company is collaborating with schools and key road safety stakeholders.

Puma Energy Zambia PLC Managing director Patricio Chababo says the company started this journey in Tanzania in partnership with Amend back in 2013.

Chababo stated that the “Be Road Safe Campaign” stands as a testament to Puma’s commitment to corporate social responsibility, aiming not only to enhance road safety but also to empower citizens and youths within communities.

He said this initiative is aimed at instilling a culture of road safety within society especially children.

“Tragically, road accidents remain one of the leading causes of death amongst children and young people aged between 5 and 29 years, highlighting the vulnerability of our youth in today’s fast paced world,” he revealed.

“The programme will initially target primary schools located in road accident hotspots – Libala, Burma, New Mandevu, Twashuka, and Mambilima.”

Chababo noted that schools play a crucial role in shaping the future generation and equipping children with essential road safety knowledge.

“#BeRoadSafe is not merely a campaign; it is a transformative platform that aims to create a safer environment for our children. We believe that every child deserves a safe journey to and from school and it is our responsibility to educate them on navigating traffic hazards and protecting themselves from potential accidents,” he stated.

The general manager extended his gratitude to Amend and Road Safety Trust and other stakeholders for the partnership .

Meanwhile, the ministry of Transport and Logistics has welcomed the visionary approach by Puma in addressing road traffic accidents stating that the initiative will bring about tangible change.

Minister of Transport and Logistics Frank Tayali spoke at the launch through a speech delivered on his behalf by the Road Transport and Safety (RTSA)Agency Board chairperson Allen Tendai Mate.

Tayali said Zambia was grappling with the challenge of road traffic accidents particularly affecting the youth, with disturbing data from the Zambia police revealing that an annually nearly 2000 lives are lost on the road.

He stated that Be Road Safe Campaign will safeguard lives, reduce accidents and instill a culture of responsible road usage.

“Puma Enegy’s Be Road Safe Campaign emerges a beacon of hope and a symbol of corporate responsibility,” he declared.

“Road safety education transcends the adherence to rules. It is a shared responsibility to foster a safer road environment.”

Furthermore, the minister urged other stakeholders to actively participate and engage the campaign.

Representing the Ministry of Education through the office of the District Board Secretary (DEBS) Esnart Mwanza commended Puma and other stakeholders for remembering school going children as they were the most vulnerable when it comes to road traffic accidents.

By Catherine Pule

Kalemba, March 16, 2024

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