AafathisNET reports that an accident involving a motorist who had taken an infant for a ride without the mandatory safety jacket. Apparently the accident did not result in any fatal injuries as both motorist had been riding at low speeds.
The report argues that the streets of Male’ are heavily packed with traffic and therefore not quite safe for riding with infants especially without the mandatory safety jacket. However, the report highlights that a parent has said that he believe he should have the freedom to take his child on his motorbike without any restrictions by the authorities.
Apparently the Attorney General’s Office has issued caution to all motorists that those violating the mandatory requirement when riding with an infant will be charged under the relevant section of the Law on Land Vehicles. The punishment for violating the same is banishment for six months to a year or house arrest and withholding of license for a period of one to two years.
Child abuse by neglect is a major issue in the Maldives. Authorities have promised to act responsibly in relations to these “horrendous” acts of abuse, yet the translation of these promises into action is yet to be seen in a manner that is commensurat with those promises.
We would like to call on all parties to act responsibly in safeguarding the lives of children.