Monday, 30 November 2009


Heroism is a rarely used word in many societies and the actions that qualify one as a hero can vary and also may be very subjective. while in some cultures, taking a risk is an act of heroism, in some others, being brave and daring automatically qualifies one as a hero. Worst still, in some known regions of the world, the only symbol of heroism is death. Little wonder in such places, lives really do not matter a thing.

As a senior friend will always remark, "all heroes are dead and to be one, you must lay your life down..." Dear friends, in our part of the world, especially in Nigeria, death is a serious thing and until recently, suicide was a NO NO to us. Our heroism will have to come through other forms of activities and actions but not intentional death. However, in this same Nigeria, when you see some actions and activities being performed by people during play, work, or whatsoever, you have to argue very seriously with yourself and finally agree that this is a suicide mission perceived otherwise.

Now let's get thinking; how would you describe the actions of this man in this picture? Suicidal or heroic! Perhaps bravery and daring! Well, I will tell you without being sarcastic that this is a suicide attempt and in a society where lives matter, charges ought to be filed against such a person for attempting to kill himself. But can you imagine what the bystanders and perhaps, other family members will be saying about this person...your guess is as correct as mine!

You may however be thinking again now (as would be expected) that perhaps this is not real...a possible photoshop or computer manipulation. Well, I have news for you if this is your thought now.
There are many more risky and (very highly risky) actions that people carry out today all in the name of work. I have personally seen so many that i have stopped counting and I am sure, a good number of people have seen worst cases of unsafe acts and at-risk behaviours. Sometimes, you need to take a good look at your surrounding and see what people do described as work and you will agree with me that this picture here could actually be a child's play to what you will observe.

Work has never meant death or suicide in any dictionary and definitely it is not the same. We work to improve our lives and this objective can only be achieved when people work safely, giving room to be a ble to work another day. This man is probably working or trying to perform a task but you and I know this is not right...a work is only done well if it is done safely.

Let us take this message to our society and preach the good news of safety...if it not safe, don't do it because there is always a time to do right and safe.

Monday, 23 November 2009

Road Traffic Accident in Nigeria

The Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) is a government agency in Nigeria charged with the responsibilities of preventing accidents on Nigerian roads through awareness, training, legislation and enforcement. Recently, the agency published the statistics of recorded traffic accidents in Nigeria between the period of January and October, 2009 during the awareness campaigns to promote safe and defensive driving especially during the upcoming festive seasons.

A first look at the statistics did not strike any cord until i read between the lines and it dawn on me that these statistics are people...not just figures. Can you imagine loosing someone close to you? thousands of families in Nigeria have lost their loved ones in the last 10 months due to some actions and/or inactions on the roads which could have contributed to the accidents.

The statistics released from FRSC are shown in this piece...please consider this and remember, it can happen to anybody as long as it can be traced to same attitude on the road.

Wednesday, 4 November 2009

Lagos State Security Emergency Numbers

There is no denying the facts that Lagos state is setting the pace for other states in Nigeria to follow in several ways. If you have been out of Lagos state in the last two years, then you will definitely be overtly surprised by the new face of Lagos. These changes are particularly worthy of note considering the facts that many of us have lost faith in the Nigerian states and since we cannot do anything immediate about the situations, we just withdraw into our cocoons and hope that one day, things will look different…what an irony!

Part of these obvious changes is the improvement in security awareness and control in the states. A drive round town especially in the night says the story of how we all will desire the whole of Nigeria looks like. The lighting system is unbelievable...even with the epileptic supply of power from our national power grids. This you will agree with me is an important security control system as the hoodlums and other night urchins no longer have places to hide in dark alleys, under bridges, motor parks, and the likes.

In addition to this, the Lagos state emergency management parastatal in partnership with the Nigerian Police recently published some numbers for prompt responses to security issues and emergencies in Lagos state. This is laudable because in many countries of the world today, the mobile telephones have become an important tool in emergency management and after eight years of mobile telephony revolution in Nigeria, it is not too early to start enjoying same benefits.

I gave these numbers to a couple of friends recently to save in their mobile phones but as expected, some doubted the reality and workability of these services. I understand the reason for their doubts...anybody who have been in Nigeria for a while will probably be as pessimistic about such services as they were. However, it appears it is the done of a new era in Lagos and loosing out of such benefits just because we can't believe it is not good for anyone... remember that the only permanent thing in life itself is change.

My advice therefore, as stated in the attached picture, is to have it handy and ready to use whenever the need arises. The survival of yourself, family, colleagues, and others may just depend on it. You loose nothing having them saved on your phones but may loose too much if you don't have them at all. Like I always say, the choice is yours but making the right choice is not just common sense but knowledge through accurate information.

Monday, 2 November 2009

Road Safety: Over-speeding

If you are visiting Lagos metropolis for the first time on a sunday afternoon, you will probably make the same remarks someone made to me sometimes ago when I asked of his impression of the city. He was particularly impressed about the smooth movements of vehicles on the road as against what he previously heard about traffic situations in the state. He was quick to point out however that he suspected motorists were not obeying the speed limits regulation as he saw private and commercial vehicles cruising at high speed. He felt the rate of accident would be high if nothing was done about the speed. Of course, as you would expect, I was quick to tell him that there is a highway code in Nigeria that stipulates allowable speed for different categories of vehicle as well as locations; of which the acceptable maximum is not more than 100Km/Hr in most cases.

You may be quick to ask why this preamble. Well, yesterday (Sunday November 1, 2009) at about 3.00PM in the afternoon, coming from the Victoria Island through the 3rd mainland bridge, I observed a rather strange long vehicle traffic and I heard a whisper in my ears...'an accident has just occurred.' This can only be the reason for this long queue i concluded...& I was not wrong at all... a few minutes later, what I saw is the picture in this article. What a sight! I am sure there is a question on your lips right I had on mine as I adjusted on my seat to see what has become of a commercial vehicle popularly called danfo in Lagos. How on earth did this bus climb up this height over one metre of concrete mass on a bright sunny afternoon? Only two answers readily come to mind: a crane must have lifted it up the concrete beam or it climbed it. The latter seemed very unlikely for me to accept but alas! that was exactly what happened. The bus climbed the beam as a result of impact from excessive speed.

This is one of the many types of accidents that have been witnessed on this bridge...vehicles somersaulting, plunging into the lagoon, to mention but a few.

Over-speeding accounts for a large percentage of causes of accidents on our roads and the consequences are obvious. The advice is simple...over-speeding kill your speed and stay alive. The choice is yours and not the vehicles.'