A Tanzanian delegation met with Vietnam National Traffic Safety Committee and the NGO Asian Injury Prevention Foundation (AIPF) on November 20 to learn about Vietnam's experience in maintaining traffic safety.
John Minja, Tanzania's Commissioner General of Prisons, led the delegation of officials from the Tanzanian Ministry of Home Affairs, the Tanzanian Prisons Service, and the Tanzanian Helmet Vaccine Initiative on a tour of AIPF's Protec helmet factory.
They also met with the National Traffic Safety Committee of Vietnam.
"Encouraged by the successful helmet initiatives in Vietnam, Prime Minister Mizengo Kayanza Peter Pinda recently selected the appropriate government agencies to develop a similar program in Tanzania," AIPF said in a statement.
The delegation signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with AIPF on November 22 to build a helmet factory in East Africa based on the Protec model.
According to the MoU, Protec will export parts and components for local assembly in Tanzania and the factory is expected to provide high-quality helmets to the regional market, including Kenya and Uganda.
"A helmet initiative based on Vietnam's successful model and adapted to the needs of Tanzanian road users has the potential to save thousands of lives," said Minja.
"We want to learn from Vietnam's success and hope to gain valuable technical advice from AIPF and the Global Helmet Vaccine Initiative."
With a population of 47 million people, Tanzania faces a growing road safety crisis similar to the situation in Vietnam. Tanzania reported 2,595 fatalities and 16,308 injuries due to traffic accidents in 2007.