BETWEEN LASEPA AND LASAA.
The recent clampdown on seven pentecostal churches by Lagos State Environmental Protection Agency(LASEPA) over abatement of noise pollution in the state indicated the consciousness of churches over the use of their sound systems. Though the Lagos State government has cautioned churches to control their speakers at their worship centres in recent times.The Agency meant well for Lagosians to have peace in their environment.Many pentecostal and orthodox churches are sited in private residents which regular noise that emanates from these worship centres are injurious to human beings. Some church pastors failed to realize that noise pollution can be controlled if the need arises but the reverse is now the case. Even the law is not only meant for churches only but also all other business organizations that involves noise pollution within the state.Many Lagosians are gradually going deaf due to excessive noise pollution that emanates from all kind of businesses in the state.Though the law is
novel to the people of the state but noise control is the only way to make Lagos state a mega city and nothing else.Many people have been arrested while some are still ignorant about the new laws in the state.
Even the mosques are not spared though some of the law makers are Muslims which invariably in advantage of the Christians in the state. The so-called monthly vigils by churches equally prompted the enactment of this law which the fear of this agency has make many churches to cancel their vigils and rather result to morning and evening services.Churches are meant to serve God but some avid analysts believe that the centres are for minting money in order to be enriched by pastors. These churches have helped to create jobs and reduce criminal activities within the state It is sad that these notable churches were closed down whereas no mosques have been affected despite the noise pollution that emanates from their daily prayers by 5am.The government needs to consider the side effect of its action. The problem with the state is that many laws are regularly enacted while Lagosians are prey to it.
Again, the Lagos State Signage and Advertising Agency (LASAA) has strongly come tough on pasting of posters in the city of Lagos.Even the State is defaced by regularly pasting of posters by churches,schools , mosques and other business organizations.Though the laws are helpful to the state if these agencies can maintain its professional ethics to the core.. Lagos state is gradually returning to a clean state in recent times.Cleanliness is the root of godliness which helps to promote Lagos state in the international communities.Most posters being pasted by church pastors especially the new generational ones and Imams are removed while the warning notices are boldly pasted in all nooks and crannies of the state. We know vividly that pasting of posters are illegal but these new laws are only affecting religious leaders and school operators and nothing else.But LASAA initially enacted this law before the 2011 general elections and the politicians including the state government flouted the laws.Many questions are begging for answers while these laws are not effective during election time.
However, many pastors are now taken advantage of organizing church rallies and handbills to propagate the good news of Jesus Christ while the Muslims and other business organizations are using fliers to disseminate their information to the public in the state . Although LASAA has built some strategic places where posters can be pasted for the public to be informed but it is hidden.Church pastors want their posters to be seen while many do not have the wherewithal to advertise their church programmes on the print and electronic media.Though LASAA must provide the basic requirements for pasting of posters in located places provided by the agency instead of creating unnecessary palpable fears among offenders of the law.Lagos State is one of the biggest city in the world which needs more proactive measures to make the state clean in all ramifications.The way some church pastors paste their posters indicate the competitiveness of church activities in the state. Other states of the federation must buy from the new laws of Lagos state to prevent future diseases among Nigerians. The state is crowded with multi-ethnic groups which population of people is over 15 million with different uniform men being created by the government. Areas like Stadium, VI, Ikeja and Apapa are designated for pasting of posters while areas like Ajegunle and Mushin are not yet designated for posters pasting.
Lastly, Church pastors, Imams , school operators and business organizations must learn from these new laws and avoid public embarrassment from these agencies in the state.Every citizen of the state must abide to the laws while those registered designated bodies that paste posters must be used .Our church pastors and Imams must learn to patronize media houses for adverts either local or national newspapers now and stop using posters to deface the environment in the name of propagating the work of God.GODDAY ODIDI, PUBLIC AFFAIRS COMMENTATOR 20 oro Street Ajegunle Apapa Lagos. 08063458693,08058124798