In 2018, the Alliance’s Africa Chapter was launched to connect Alliance members in Africa more closely, build momentum and strengthen the road safety NGO community. A strategic plan is now ready, thanks to the ongoing input of our members in Africa and particularly the editorial group of members that drafted the plan. We are excited to get started on the next steps: to build partnerships and gain funding to implement the chapter.
We spoke to two members that have been instrumental in drafting the strategic plan to hear their perspectives on the Africa Chapter and the role of Alliance NGOs.
Bright Oywaya from ASIRT (Kenya) is one of the Alliance members who has been instrumental in setting up the Africa chapter. We asked her about the value of the Chapter and what she hopes that it will achieve. “The launch of the African Chapter in 2018 was quite timely,” says Bright. “First, as a platform to bring road safety NGOs in Africa together to speak with one voice and also as a means to network and share experiences from a perspective that is African. The Africa Chapter will be in a good position to advocate for inclusion of road safety in the agenda of regional bodies like the African Union. Such initiatives like the Africa Road Safety Observatory will also provide data that can help member NGOs to hold African governments to account. I hope that all member NGOs in Africa will fully grasp this opportunity and contribute towards the success of the Africa Chapter.”
Ahmed Shelbaya, of the NADA Foundation for Safer Egyptian Roads, told us about the role that Alliance members were planning at a strategic level through an event organized by the African Union (AU) to help the AU and African Ministers attending the upcoming Sweden meeting in February to formulate a position and highlight what Africa will be doing in the coming decade to address the growing road safety threat. He said, “…The Alliance, even though represented by a few of its members in the meeting, yet had a strong presence and was active and engaged in all elements which was reflected in the final document that came out of the meeting but also through a higher appreciation of the AU towards civil society and the Alliance expressing intent to collaborate more in the future. I had very fruitful side meetings and discussions with the AU officials which culminated towards further desire to work with the Alliance and civil society. The meeting was also an opportunity to meet several African civil society members and discuss opportunities, challenges and future plans.”