ACTING President Emmerson Mnangagwa yesterday bemoaned the increase in road accidents which continue to claim many lives, especially during public holidays such as Christmas.Addressing 556 graduates at Ntabazinduna Police Training Depot in Umguza District, Matabeleland North, Cde Mnangagwa said it was alarming that most of the accidents were caused by human error.
“It is exceedingly sad that accidents on our roads continue to claim innocent and precious lives. It is painful to comprehend that during the recent Unity Day, Christmas and New Year holidays, the nation recorded 1 342 accidents which killed 78 people. It is sad to discover that most of these accidents were a result of human error and therefore could have been avoided,” he said.
Cde Mnangagwa said the country was also saddened by the loss of lives as a result of floods in some parts of the country.
“I, therefore, wish to urge fellow Zimbabweans to exercise extreme caution during this rainy season and avoid crossing flooded rivers as this may result in ghastly consequences,” he said.
The Acting President said the Government values the sanctity of human life and thus remains committed to strengthening the role of various stakeholders in disaster management.
Recently, 11 people died from flood related incidents in Mbire, Gokwe and Zvimba among other areas with the Zimbabwe Red Cross Society stating that 700 families have been displaced countrywide.
Cde Mnangagwa said despite the disasters, the prospects of a good harvest this cropping season were bright as most parts of the country have started receiving rains.
“We, therefore, remain optimistic that the country’s food security will be greatly improved,” said Cde Mnangagwa.
He said the police together with other security institutions in the country are the vanguard of the prevailing peace and tranquility.
“We cherish their professionalism and exhort them to unflinchingly continue to discharge this honourable duty,” said Cde Mnangagwa.
He said the graduates were joining a police force that has earned reputation for excellence both locally and abroad.
“The repeated invitations for the ZRP to participate in numerous United Nations peace keeping duties throughout the world is ample testimony of the high level of policing in Zimbabwe.
The need to exhibit a high degree of discipline and loyalty to the organisation and to the government is thus of paramount importance,” he said.
Cde Mnangagwa said the behaviour of the graduates should not compromise the high standards of ZRP.
He said the police and other security organs should continue to maintain peace as the government accelerates the implementation of Zim Asset.
“Indeed, the ZRP is an indivisible fabric of our country and hence should tirelessly act as a critical pillar for economic prosperity,” said Cde Mnangagwa.
He said the teaching of the country’s political and economic history among other critical subjects was imperative as it engenders the virtues of patriotism, and nationalism in the ZRP.
He said the teaching also develops a “police cadre” who is conscious and proud of the county’s revolutionary history.
He called on the graduates to take every opportunity to further their studies so that they become more effective in policing and related areas.
Of the 566 graduands, 335 were males while 231 were females.
Meanwhile, Cde Mnangagwa praised the Police band which provided entertainment after the end of the official programme.
He said he had stayed on at the invitation of Police Commissioner General Augustine Chihuri and obliged out of respect but was amazed at the band’s artistry. Cde Mnangagwa said he was so entertained that he delayed a meeting with his counterpart Cde Phelekezela Mphoko in the city.