REX OWUSU Writes | EPA and Co Must Do Something About These Noisy Information Centres

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Information Centres

A friend of mine once said to me that the only law that works in this country is the one that bars men from using female washrooms — and that’s not even in our books. I think I agree with him now!

The insurgence of noise pollution in our various communities, towns and cities is alarming and frightening. You probably might have at least one ‘Information Centre’ in your community right now. They are commonly found in Lorry stations where it usually features about two or three pastors also preaching simultaneously.

Ever since Ghanaians successfully substituted the cock’s crow with the loud noise of these Information Centres, there is absolutely no peace of mind in our various homes.

Recent research however concluded that noise pollution has damning effects on individuals and the community as a whole. Notably amongst them include stress, anxiety, freight and hearing impairment.

As early as 5:00 in the morning, these Information Centres will be on and transmitting like a spiritual radio set which automatically turns on and off without the owner’s wish. These days, people hardly get a good night sleep in their own homes because of the unbearable noise these Information Centres make in the neighbourhood.

It has always been this way in Ghana — at the detriment of the calm and innocent citizens, people make money.

These so called Information Centres are definitely owned by some people who don’t pay a dime to the people they disturb but they go ahead to advertise and make money which is bizarre in this 21st century, to say the least.

One only has to get a laptop, a megaphone or mount a loud speaker and he is ready to disturb a whole community. Is that not too easy a way to engage in lawlessness? What right do the owners of these things have to disturb a neighborhood without the people living in those communities’ permission?

I’m wondering who gives permit to the operators of such unlawful things at the various Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies for them to start polluting the atmosphere with their useless noise?

Perhaps it’s just our usual “put something in an envelope” syndrome?

This should not be the headache of the assemblies but also Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) — who check noise pollution, and also the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) — who have been on the necks of radio stations for advertising unlicensed products.

I’m pretty sure they are aware but unsurprisingly have turned a deaf ear to the fact that 90% of the advertisements which come from the various Information Centres are untested, fake and dangerous drugs or better still concoctions in the shape medications.

The assemblies can under no practical jurisprudence tell me or any other citizen of this country that there has not been an unlawful influx of Information Centres in the country.

The power of these advertisements can never be undermined especially in our part of the world where diseases and infections are on the high but education and intellectual attainment is unfortunately on the low.

The force these adverts carry pounces on the ignorant ones luring them in the process for their money and in most cases leaves them with serious repercussions.

I personally want to attribute the recent high death rate of the youth in the country to these drugs and alcohols sold by the Information Centres which have not been tested to meet the criteria set by the Ghana Standards Authority.

I don’t think the citizenry apart from the owners of these Information Centres in the country are happy about these unfortunate predicaments affecting their neighbourhoods, neither am I.

I therefore entreat the various Metropolitan, Municipal and District assemblies to get their taskforces who are found of collecting bribes from commercial drivers parking at the wrong side of the road and the EPA to be apt and doing so as to clamp down on those who are ignorantly or knowingly perpetrating these unlawful Information Centre waywardness.