Malawi Police have confirmed that three people have died while nine others are fighting for their lives after sustained serious injuries in a road accident involving a minibus at Mtengowanthenga in Mponela on Wednesday morning.
Mponela Police Public Relations Officer, Kondwani Kandiado, confirmed the accident and says the minibus was travelling from Karonga to Lilongwe.
Eye witnesses saying a minibus driver was over speeding and caused grievous injuries to the passengers.
But Kandiado said they are still investigating the cause of the accident.
The statistics from the Directorate of Road Traffic and Safety Services (DRTSS) paint a grim picture of the horror in road carnage as the number of road accidents on Malawi roads has almost tripled over the past five years, killing roughly 1 300 people annually,.
From July to September this year, 329 lives were lost on the country’s roads.
According to DRTSS spokesperson Angelina Makweche, the death rate is soaring due to over-speeding.
“There were 854 road accidents between July and September this year. About 330 lives were lost,” she says.
Law enforcers, policy makers and a road traffic expert say drivers’ carelessness is the major cause of the mishaps.
Other road users argue that while over-speeding was a cause of the accidents, the primary cause was poor road network.
One road accident victim, Godfrey Mfiti, is on record saying that corruption among road traffic officials is a major contributing factor to the accidents.
Mfiti—a renowned local environmental activist—who said he saw death pay him a blind visit, but somehow, passed him as it consumed 10 fellow passengers on that doomed bus trip from Blantyre to Lilongwe a month ago.
He said he does not understand how the police allowed the bus they were travelling in to pass through the road block when it was obvious that the bus was speeding beyond the recommended limit. Mfiti suspects it was because of corruption.
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