|South Africa’s transport minister called on police Sunday to crack down on dangerous drivers after the latest accident in a country where 16,000 people die on the road each year.
“Police must arrest all those who do not wear seatbelts, those who speed and those who drive drunk. The police must show no mercy,” Sbu Ndebele said during a funeral for six people who died in a traffic accident.
“Unless we do something about it today, soon we will find that in 2020 roads will kill more people than those who die from HIV and malaria put together,” he said.
South Africa is known for its record high crime rate, but it is also one of the most dangerous countries to drive in with just nine million vehicles circulating.
Some 45 people die on its roads each day, while 50 people are murdered on average. Half of the road victims are pedestrians hit by vehicles.
By comparison, Britain has 35 million vehicles but recorded 3,300 traffic deaths in 2006. France, with 40 million vehicles, reported around 4,500 road deaths.