Road Safety Speech

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SPEECH

FOR THE FORUM ON ROAD SAFETY MCE TRANSPORT UNIVERSITY OF MAURITIUS REDUIT MAURITIUS BY DR A. K. MAULLOO 6TH APRIL 2006

Pro-Chancellor, Prof. S. Jugessur, Vice-Chancellor, Prof. I. Fagoonee, Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen On behalf of the members of the Multidisciplinary Centre of Excellence Transport, I have immense pleasure, as Theme Leader of this Centre, to welcome you this afternoon to the Forum on Road Safety. I am sure most of you present here today, are wondering what is this MCE Transport? Let me start with a brief introduction on MCE Transport. Well, all the credit goes to the University of Mauritius for this innovative initiative to group experts from different fields under one umbrella in the form of an Excellence Park. Each component is called a Multidisciplinary Centre of Excellence (MCE). MCE Transport is just one member of this growing family of MCEs. Why an MCE Transport? On a normal day, an individual will often use physical transportation (going to the shop, dropping the kids to school, going to work,and so on). But, let us imagine, for a moment, Mauritius without a proper transport system, say, for 24 hours. I leave you to draw your own conclusions about the chaotic situation that will prevail. I am quite sure that most, if not all, of you will agree that Transport has become an integral part of our current life and culture. The transport sector fulfills a major role in the Mauritian economy and society. For millennia there have been people concerned with the means that achieve a proper transport system. . I am pleased to see many familiar experts in the business here today. This in itself is a motivation for forums of this type. The present achievements in this vast field (in our country or worldwide) is the end-result of people from all sectors (economists, engineers, scientists, the arts, management, social sciences, etc) and also from all walks of life.

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This is mainly the raison d’etre of the MCE Transport. Our vision is to contribute in the building of a safe and effective transport system and to strive to achieve excellence in the transport sector. Today I would like to seize this opportunity to invite you people from the audience, irrespective of your age group or the institution you belong to, to join us help make a difference. We have circulated a registration form to create a database for future communications. So please take a few minutes to fill it in and indicate your field of interest. More information will be on our website as indicated in the brochure. Ladies and Gentlemen At the MCE Transport, our aims are multifold: It has been observed that, although there is a quantum of experts in this vast field scattered in various institutions on the island, there is a tendency for authorities to hire foreign consultants at a magnanimous cost to perform studies which can be done by our local experts on various aspects of the transport industry. One goal of this MCE is to make optimal use of our local expertise by bringing them together. And once again, this MCE is the right platform. This approach will definitely help to contribute to research and studies in the various transport sectors of Mauritius with a long term view of proposing possible alternatives for solving the existing transport problems. It is also important to highlight that the transport sector ranks high in the government programme. The MCE Transport will promote activities in the same direction; the Forum on Road Safety being one of them. Our aim is also to provide high level training to practising professionals in this field, as well as fresh graduates (engineering, science, social sciences, economics –from any subject area). In this context we shall develop and support appropriate courses with the aim of providing expert up-to-date knowledge. One such project is the forthcoming short course on Highway and Traffic Engineering. Part of this course will focus on a very powerful software called...
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