The Shell Petroleum Development Company, SPDC, has launched a campaign aimed at ensuring that students in Bayelsa state are protected from reckless road motorists while going to or from School.
To drive home the initiative, Shell is involving the Bayelsa State Ministry of Education as well as the Bayelsa State Command of the Federal Road Safety Corps, FRSC, as implementing partners in the project.
At the launch of the project in Bayelsa, Alaye Dokubo, Government and Community Relations Manager in Charge of Bayelsa and Delta operational areas of SPDC, noted that safety was an important aspect of the oil firm’s operations.
He added that Shell was committed to ensuring that pupils were properly educated on how to safely navigate through the roads in order to avoid mishaps.
Dokubo noted that the project will kick-off in six primary schools across the state.
According to him, the project will involve the creation of zebra crossing signages at the selected schools within the high traffic routes, training of teachers to serve as Zebra Crossing Guides as well as training of the pupils on road safety habits.
Also Speaking at the kick-off of the ‘safe routes to school project’, Nduka Ejoor, another Executive of the SPDC, pointed out that the project was necessary and timely, given that 90 percent of Nigerian School children walk to school and were at risk due to high population of untrained drivers on Nigerian roads.
Bayelsa Sector Commandant of the FRSC, Ayuba Wobin, commended Shell for embarking on the project to instill road safety habits on children at a tender age.
He disclosed that the FRSC had developed a road safety curriculum for schools which is being used by Road Safety Clubs, adding that the command would work with heads of the six selected schools to inaugurate the Road Safety club in their schools.
Commissioner for Education in Bayelsa State, Markson Fefegha, who was represented at the event by Ann Amosame, said that crossing roads was a general challenge for both children and adult pedestrians.
She applauded Shell for reintroducing the zebra crossings which she said were defaced due to road construction projects.
Hundreds of pupils from the six selected schools were also at the launch of the project.