These Ugly Consequences Of Urban Disorder!

It jumps to every eye that there is growing urban and social disorder in the cities, towns and agglomerations of the country. Such dysfunction is typified in public space or public utility by the abandonment of vehicles or items in Police or Gendarmerie office yards. Road circulation suffers roadblocks, disrespect of driving code, and offensive parking of vehicles. Also gaining a disturbing proportion in social circles are such acts as encroachment, sewage exposure, noise pollution from churches and business strives, uncouth human behaviour in public and just all that brings distress. Public disorder and nuisance are so rising. Observers describe the situation as the state of forgotten notions and values that should be propitious to human progress.
Disgusting consequences ensue from actions of urban disorder to include traffic go-slow, upsetting movement, rowdiness, and a breach of peace. These glaring social ills affect development, social cohesion and good life. When thoroughfare, public office space and even the right to easement become a forgotten value, where and when can communities be seen as embracing civilization?
The situation of a brimming disorder came to a head recently when readers perused the pages of Cameroon Tribune of 7 December, 2022, with amazement over a strong communiqué from the Yaounde traffic police boss. The Police called on the concerned to, within 72 hours, show up to collect their abandoned items to clear their office space. If not, such items would be assigned to competent services for auction. The cumbrous articles include abandoned vehicles and motorcycles in Police yards by offenders after being booked from accidents and lawlessness. Apart from Police yard, some of the vehicles, too, are packed by roadsides for weeks and months blocking circulation. Thereafter, the owners disappear into thin air leaving their belongings to rot, litter and occupy working space.
Order is very much linked to morality. It also takes the dimension of keeping the laws and regulations of the community with punishment for breakers. The construction of houses out of the norms, the erection of motor repair garages even right into the roads, disrespect of boundaries, all of these in total indifference of authorities, is a matter for concern. Action must therefore be taken to ensure that where there is contempt, there is sanction and correction.
One needs not to scratch any surface to know that streets are the business of the local councils. Where there is space obstruction, the fingers can only point to the local government for either laxity or complacency. Yet, in many of the towns and cities blocked gutters are found in the various neighbourhoods. Overflowing toilets are stinking and attracting flies. The markets are littered with unsold vegetable leaves. Garages empty engine oil right into the streets. And the mess continues to linger.
What prevents the local council from controlling and stopping any cumbrous project that encroaches into the roads? What prevents the council from clearing any garage extending into the road and sanctioning such abuse? The councils ought to derive means to check such dizzy and hazy images of their towns. The Councils and supporting forces should have what it takes to stop activities that disturb public order and clear blocked passages promptly. But what one observes is that disturbances and blockages occur and last for weeks and months before some frantic action is taken to see into the problem when the citizens have suffered the effects and even become used to the bad situation.
The causes of laxity are legion. But what stands out clear is the inefficiency and helplessness of some authorities in charge. In many cases, officials have been corrupted to turn a blind eye on the goings on. Worse, some powers that be are known to foment urban disorder by themselves. Take for instance an authority who decides to construct a mansion and extends its foundation right into the public road. Who is supposed to control the authority of the municipality in his own dwelling?
Away from authorities, the social mutations have become the order of the day exposing remote causes of urban disorder these days. A manifest exodus is current with many people fleeing their socio-political crisis infested abode to safer localities mainly in towns and cities. They come with their properties and need space. For example, the limited streets of the South West capital of Buea are today receiving a sea of vehicles not much from a normal population periodical growth, but...



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