This madness of blaring sirens indiscriminately by the privileged few (wealthy people) must be brought to a halt if we must have a serene and orderly society.
To this end, the present Inspector General of Police (IGP), Mohammed Abubakar gave directives to the States Commissioners of Police (CPs) to commence the arrest of persons caught using the sirens illegally. To me, this directive is in order because sirens today have lost the original value and usage. The police chief is very right no matter how it is viewed, to insist on the implementation of the law which guides the use of sirens to ensure orderliness on our roads for the benefit of all.
All kinds of public officers and even private rich individuals especially political leaders upset public peace and smooth flow of traffic with sirens in the major cities of the country today. Even the villages are not even safe as far as sirens illegal use is concerned.
Uncontrolled sirens blaring expectedly cause major noise pollution which on the other hand causes disorderliness and commotion as seen on expressways today.
Often times, these unlawful siren users cause road accidents as they usually infringe other motorists and pedestrians and break traffic laws at will.
Many past Inspector General of Police (IGP) tried to address this illegality during their reigns but there were no successes. The reason why this failed in the past cannot be far from the reason why all the good policies in the past failed, the ‘Nigerian factor’.
It is plausible that the Police boss is revisiting this matter especially now that many illegalities have been legalized by the insensitive few (the so called wealthy citizens). Today, even the motorcycle riders blare sirens just to tell you how far the country has deteriorated in lawlessness.
Notwithstanding that the directive appears something repetitive the IGPs rekindled interest in this regulation should spur the police to enforce it more seriously and interestingly so that the roads will be safe for all to use.
The Inspector of Police outlined the category of public officers that are permitted by law to use sirens. According to the IGP, they are: the President, Vice President, State Governors and Deputy Governors. Others included in the list are the Senate President, the Deputy Senate President, the Speaker of House of Representatives and his deputy, the Service chiefs, the IGP, Deputy Inspectors –General of Police (DIGs), Assistant Inspectors-General of Police (AIGs), Commissioners of Police (CPs), the General Officers Commanding (GOCs) of the Army, and First Class traditional rulers.
I know you are itching to ask some questions as regards the inclusion of certain groups of persons such as the traditional leaders and the distinction between the so called first class and the other classes but the most qualified person to answer such question is the Inspector General of Police.
Any person or group of persons that is not on the above list is not permitted to use sirens and the police should ensure that it is no longer disobeyed because the abuse of sirens is a form of indiscipline and should be taken care of.
To me, I believe that any directive that can help reduce to the barest minimum the chaos and noise pollution in our various communities and cities is a welcome one because noise pollution as generated by indiscriminate use of sirens is not only dangerous to the eardrums but to the general well being of the people.
In fact, this abuse of sirens is one of the cultures of self mystification in the country and should be condemned in strong terms. Many see it as a way of showing affluence and social status but I call inhumanity of man against man.
Conclusively, the police who are supposed to enforce the order should at least for the sake of the poor masses discharge this duty faithfully. Let it not be another means of extorting money from those who disregard the regulations, and allow them to go scot free. Failure to punish offenders will defeat the ideals and objectives of the regulation and the law will not have the expected deterrent effect. God save from both ’egunje’ police officers and siren abusers!
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