In Bayelsa State, especially Yenagoa, the state capital, there is increasing rate of lawlessness that calls for concern. The situation could be likened to a state that abides under a very loose laissez-faire.
In Yenagoa, everyone seems to be going his own way and doing his own thing without recourse to the extant laws of the land.
For instance, road users seem to have grown wings and can fly over the law without pang. The tricycle operators can over take on-going vehicles from both flanks of the road. Many at times, road users behave in a manner that suggests that there are no existing traffic laws.
In the same vein, motorists hurl defiance at traffic rules and regulations. They can pack their cars anywhere. Taxis drivers can pick commuters indiscriminately. Sometimes, they fragrantly disobey traffic wardens on duty and get away with it.
Traders are not left out. With impunity, they ply their trades on major expressways and on top of bridges, not minding the dangers associated with such recklessness. They do not only obstruct vehicular movements and cause gridlock on the highways, but also pose threat to human lives. Many souls have been wasted to this act of foolhardiness.
The same goes to those saddled with the responsibility to collect taxes for the state government. Many of them engage in illicit acts, creating avenues for multiple taxations with such monies going into their private pockets without corresponding punishment.
The act of lawlessness also rares its ugly head against security of lives and property. The police who are meant to secure lives some times turn to be thorns on their flesh. In Many police checkpoints, especially at nights, uniformed men are seen brazenly and forcefully extorting motorists, particularly the tricycle operators. Criminals take undue advantage of a lawless situation to commit all manner of atrocities including robbery, cultism and all that.
All the above outlined acts of lawlessness have their grave consequences. In all, both the state and the teaming innocent residents are always on the receiving ends. For instance, if taxes are fraudulently collected by those assigned to do so, the state government would suffer low internally generated revenue while a few corrupt individuals smile to the banks.
Pundits have attributed the causes of the increasing rate of lawlessness in the state to lack of will power on the side of government to hold offenders of the laws accountable no matter whose ox is gored. They observe that if government is loose in the area of maintaining law and order, crime will have fertile groui to thrive unabated.
The state government is therefore advised to be alive to its responsibilities of enforcing the laws at all levels. The government of the state should always place appropriate sanctions on erring individuals and corporate bodies, using the relevant institutions such as the police and other relevant agencies. Government should meet the demands of the people because it has been established that poverty creates a chaotic situation.
The police should always uphold her primary functions of maintaining law and order as well as protection of lives and property without sellective or lopsided judgements based on the personalities involved. The police should avoid the temptation of collecting bribes which may impair their sense of judgements.
Individuals should know that there are existing laws guiding their actions and inactions. They should know that the law is sacrosanct and no one is above the law irrespective of the position of the individual that flouts it.