Traffic deaths, crime up by 44 percent – Malawi Police

Traffic related deaths in roads of Malawi’s commercial capital Blantyre have gone up by over 44 percent in the first quarter of the year, Police figures have shown.

Malawi police service while confirming the development attributed soaring in figures of road deaths to alcohol abuse and over speeding on the part of road users.

According to the statistics, the city has also experienced an increase in crime rate a development the police have blamed on unemployment which has been on the rise in recent years.

Meanwhile, figures Nyasa Times sourced at Blantyre police station indicate that since January this year a total of 41 people have perished due to road accidents in the city alone. This is a sharp increase from the same period last year where police had recorded just 23 deaths.

Police officer on patrol

Commenting on the issue, Blantyre police spokesperson Yona Thembachako told Nyasa Times the situation is worrying especially considering the fact that most roads in the city are better off than they were before.

“The year 2012 has started on bad note because in the first quarter alone a total of over 40 people lost lives due to road carnage related deaths unlike last year where it is only 23 people that died. As police we are very much worried with the development,” explained Thembachako.

He therefore appealed to road users and pedestrians to be extra careful by ensuring that they are abiding to road instructions.

“As police we are indeed concerned but am urging the general public to help the police by among other things avoid driving under the influence of alcohol and also over speeding because that’s what has triggered the jump in figures.”

Blantyre has over the years seen its traffic death figures faltering partly due to heavy handedness of traffic police approach to motorists especially minibus operators in the city.

He also said there has been increase in personal crime, which includes violence against the person, robbery and pick pocketing.

 

The spokesman said crime is measured by the number of offences reported to and recorded by the police.

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