“Exercise a lot of caution”: Catholic Bishop in Kenya to Road Users During Christmas

Bishop Willybard Kitogho Lagho of Kenya's Malindi Diocese. Credit: Malindi Diocese

The Bishop of Kenya’s Catholic Diocese of Malindi has called on Kenyans traveling from cities in the East African country for Christmas celebrations with their families to exercise caution on the roads to avoid causing accidents.

In a Wednesday, December 20 interview with ACI Africa, Bishop Willybard Kitogho Lagho blamed road accidents in Kenya, which are usually rampant during the Christmas season, on drunk driving, overspeeding, and fatigue among those behind the wheel.

“As we travel to be with our families during Christmas, my call to all of us is to exercise a lot of caution especially on our roads. Let us also not overindulge in alcohol consumption. We all know that drunkenness as well as fatigue are the leading causes of accidents on our roads in Kenya,” Bishop Lagho said.

He added, “Let us also drive within the acceptable speed as we use our roads.” 

The Kenyan government revealed on Monday, December 18 that in 2023 alone, over 3,900 Kenyans lost their lives in road accidents in the country.


Speaking during the launch of Usalama Barabarani Festive Season campaign, an initiative to guide stakeholders in the transport industry during the Christmas festive season and beyond, Kenya’s Roads and Transport Cabinet Secretary, Kipchumba Murkomen, noted that most of the accidents happen due to drunk driving.

“The majority of road traffic incidents can be prevented by adhering to safety rules. About 90% of accidents result from unsafe road user behavior. I, therefore, implore each citizen to take personal responsibility and minimize the factors that contribute to risky road behavior,” Murkomen stated.

Meanwhile, Bishop Lagho has encouraged Kenyans traveling to be with their families for the Christmas festivities to set aside some time to pay attention to the needs of each of their family members. 

“Let us listen to the challenges that our family members are facing. As we all know, a problem shared is half-way solved. Let us listen especially to the children in our families who do not get to enjoy enough time with their parents,” the Bishop of Malindi said.

“It is only by spending time with the children and listening to their challenges and inspirations in life that we are able to guide them,” he said, and added, “On this note, I wish you a merry Christmas and a prosperous new year.”

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Agnes Aineah is a Kenyan journalist with a background in digital and newspaper reporting. She holds a Master of Arts in Digital Journalism from the Aga Khan University, Graduate School of Media and Communications and a Bachelor's Degree in Linguistics, Media and Communications from Kenya's Moi University. Agnes currently serves as a journalist for ACI Africa.