The Corps Marshal, Federal Road Safety Corps, FRSC, Mr Boboye Oyeyemi, has absolved demons of responsibility for the high rate of road traffic accidents during ember months.
Mr Oyeyemi spoke at the launch of the 10th edition of the “Don’t Drink and Drive’’ campaign of the Nigerian Breweries, NB, in collaboration with the FRSC in Abuja on Wednesday.
Represented by the Corps Public Education Officer, Bisi Kazeem, the FRSC boss blamed the situation on recklessness and irresponsible acts of motorists and other road users.
“The Ember Months being a period of festivities, people are wont to get drunk on a daily basis in the name of celebration.
“Nigerians must be aware that frequent cases of road crashes during this period, particularly the ember months are unconnected to demonic activities.
“This campaign, therefore, is a timely reminder that drinking and driving do not only pose threat to the life of the drunk driver, but also to the lives and property of other of all road users.
“Such are still a threat to the state of road infrastructure which costs a lot of resources to produce and mount on the highways and city centres.’’
The FRSC boss recalled that 31 accidents involving 122 people were recorded during the 2016 ember month, leaving five persons dead and 53 injured.
He said driving under the influence of alcohol and other drugs was largely responsible for the recorded cases of accidents.
This, according to him, underscores the fact that a drunk driver is more likely to drive dangerously or involve in other life-threatening road traffic violations.
The FRSC helmsman lauded the NB for placing the safety of lives and property of its customers above profit with the “Don’t Drink and Drive’’ campaign.
The Managing Director of NB, Johan Doyer, said the campaign was an annual awareness creation and life-saving initiative, designed to promote responsible drinking among drivers and other road users.
Mr Doyer, represented by the NB Head of Government Relations, Vivian Ikem, said the programme has been running since 2008.
According to him, it was part of the company’s “Brewing a Better World” sustainability journey.
He said “For our road users, most especially our commercial drivers (tanker, luxury bus drivers and Keke and Okada riders), we want to encourage you to drink responsibly as the lives of the passengers are in your hands.
“One mistake on the wheel can take the lives of so many people. Our message is clear and simple: don’t drive and drive.
“If there is an organisation that is properly positioned to send this message, I think it is the Nigerian Breweries because we are more concerned about the lives of our fellow Nigerians than the money and profits that come to us an organisation.’’
The NB chief executive commended the FRSC for its sustained commitment to the reduction of road traffic accidents and deaths as well as the success of the “Don’t Drink and Drive’’ campaign.
Some transport union leaders, present at the occasion, promised to pass the message to their members as well as institute their own measures to prevent drunk driving.