A bright teenager busy looking for a college place after graduating from high school, Abdul Qader’s life was cut short as he returned home from watching a football match with friends.
He and his friend Saeed, both 17, returned home on an unlicenced motorbike and drove without helmets. A car collided with the bike and both young men were thrown off. Abdul died before he could be taken to hospital. Saeed is critically ill in the Intensive Care Unit at Khoula Hospital.
The victims were Bangladeshi citizens and long term residents of Oman who were returning home after watching a football match at the Muscat Club when their motorcycle was in collision with a car. The teenagers had recently graduated from Bangladesh School Muscat and were on the hunt for the right college.
“They were both on this motorcycle which was owned by Saeed, and Saeed was also the one riding it when the accident occurred,” said Lokman Hossain, Abdul’s brother in-law.
“On Thursday evening, both the boys had gone to see a football match at the Muscat Club in the same area on the motorcycle, and on their way back they were hit by a car on the service road near Indian School Al Wadi Al Kabir,” Hossain added.
The motorcycle was not insured or even registered with the ROP, and the boys were not wearing any safety gear.
Abdul ’s parents had gone to Bangladesh on vacation a week before the accident and came back only after hearing of their son’s death.
Ali Al Barwani, CEO of the Oman Road Safety Association (ORSA), said: “I am very sad on hearing this. This accident is a warning to people to be aware that a motorcycle riding culture is growing in the country, especially these days because of the nice weather, where younger boys like to get out and have fun.
“So this is really something which we need to focus on immediately, and something needs to be done about the categorisation of motorcycles, basically making clear what type of bike can be used for what purpose.
“The other highlight and learning point from this accident is also the safety aspect. Whenever something moving is involved, especially a vehicle, people need to make sure that they have all the safety protection gear on, and in this case it was basic stuff like a helmet and knee and arm protection. “
Abdul ’s family is in shock over the untimely death. “I can’t explain my feelings, can’t say what I am going through, I can only say that the ROP should become more strict with people using two-wheelers, especially when there are teenagers involved,” said Shakila Chowdhry, Abdul’s sister.
Lokman Hossain, brother-in-law of Abdul, said: “It’s so difficult for the entire family, I don’t want anyone to lose their son like this, I think people need to become more cautious when they are using these two-wheelers and parents need to supervise their children, see who they are going out with.
“Only after the accident I heard from his friends that they were caught once before, about a year ago, where the police had warned them about riding the motorcycle but we were not informed.
“Two-wheelers are dangerous, especially for the children. The police should take some crucial steps when they catch teenagers on two-wheelers; the families need to be informed so that the children can also get warned at home.
“My brother in-law is now dead, and his friend is in ICU fighting for his life. I hope my message reaches more people so that nobody
ever loses their child this way,” Lokman added.
“I want parents to keep an eye on their children, see what they are doing and not let them buy such scooters and motorcycles at younger ages,” said Abdul’s father, who was too upset to comment further. The family funeral took place at the Al Amerat graveyard late yesterday afternoon.