As part of efforts to reduce noise making in the country, the Ministry of Local Government together with the Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), yesterday launched the third National Noise Awareness Day in Accra.
The Deputy Minister of Local Government, Alhaji Ahmed Yirimea Awudu said, “noise making is gradually becoming a way of life and a culture of lawlessness and must be curbed by all.”
Speaking at the third National Noise Awareness Day on the theme- “Noise Reduction; Our Collective Responsibility”, Hon. Ahmed Yirimea was alarmed at the overwhelming noise created by lawless individuals in the cities and suburbs.
This, he said was having a toll on people's health, peace and convenience in the country.
“Indications from the complaints desk of the EPA, shows an escalation of the noise nuisance in suburbs of the Accra Metropolis, and out of the total of 78 complaints received in 2007, 40% was on noise alone,” he noted.
He identified activities of churches, mosques, funerals, naming ceremonies as major sources of noise pollution in the country.
Further, he noted that “the dangers posed by prolonged exposure to noise which is supported by literature from the medical community causes serious effects such as hearing loss, faster heart beat, blood pressure, muscle tensions, migraine headaches and high cholesterol levels.”
He expressed worry about new developments in the country where the activities of VCD and DVD vendors who move about the cities in vehicles mounted with loudspeakers making noise.
Meanwhile, the EPA has produced some environmental education and awareness creation materials on noise for schools and civil society groups.
“This is as a way of sensitizing the public to be aware of dangers of noise exposure to human health,” he added.
He thus appealed to all and sundry to put their hands on deck to reduce the menace and also urged District Assemblies and the Police Service to help reduce noise levels during festive seasons and other occasions.
“I also appeal to community leaders and traditional authorities to step up efforts at sensitizing their people on the negative effects of noise since the youth and the aged are the most vulnerable,” he emphasized.
Dr Dansoah Adams of the Ridge Hospital in Accra, joined the crusade on noise reduction saying, “not only religious and social activities create noise pollution, but industrial activities and technical machinery contribute to the noise menace.”
He therefore appealed to manufacturers of industrial and home appliances to reduce the noise such products make.
On the way forward, Dr Dansoah suggested that massive education should be embarked on by using the media (Radio, TV and newspapers) as tools since excessive noise making was detrimental to humans, especially children.