How Noisy Is Lagos? – Josh Journal
Lagos is sometimes tagged the city that never sleeps. That use to be a name reserved for New York, but it seems Lagos is trying to wrestle that name.
I can remember during the Akinwunmi Ambode led government, steps were actually taken to actualize this.
The one-term governor was interested in reviving nightlife in Lagos. There was a lot of installation of street lights around the state. That was supposed to help kick start the night economy.
As someone who used to close from his mother’s shop by past 12 midnight, 1 AM, and even later, I have firsthand knowledge of how fun Lagos can be at night.
One thing that accompanies Lagos nightlife and fun in general, is noise. Lagos is easily the noisiest of all Nigerian states.
I honestly doubt if there is any city as noisy as Lagos on the African continent.
From electricity generators to loudspeakers, live music, noisy vehicles, Lagos just can’t be quiet. Add to that the religious centers on every street, and the motorcycle that have speakers attached to them.
I have not mentioned the car horns that have turned to toys in the hands of Lagos drivers. Or the extra loud horns that some drivers replace the default one with.
It is so noisy that whenever there is a semblance of quietness, Lagosians get worried. Quietness in Lagos can only mean one thing; trouble.
Whenever things get quiet and a slap or breaking of a bottle doesn’t crack the silence, someone quickly turns up their speaker. Or generator. Or vehicle with a pre-independence engine.
For most Lagosians, as soon as you turn off your electricity generator, there is a semblance of quietness around you. To the untrained ear, that sounds good enough.
That is until a film crew tries to record the sound from their production.
Each time you see a film crew filming in Lagos, I would have asked you to go and give them a bow, but that might interrupt their shooting.
Instead, whenever you met a Lagos filmmaker, please speak kindly to them. Lagos is kicking them hard enough already.
If it is not their own generator disturbing them on set, it is a neighbors gen. And when PHCN is kind enough to supply the light, then the welder, food grinder, and neighborhood DJ will be the ones disturbing.
All of this is after the street urchins have seized their equipment for over three hours while the police watch unperturbed.
On the occasion when the average Lagosian visits another city, spend the night in quietness and wakes up to the sound of chirping birds, you suddenly realize that Lagos has been punishing you.
You can hear yourself and your neighbors without shouting. That is after people have asked you why you are shouting. Or angry.
But Lagos has a strong grip. If you leave Lagos for two weeks, you either vow never to return, or miss it so bad, you are in a hurry to return.
For most people, it is a combination of both.
Maybe a law on noise pollution would restore some sanity.
Actually, we have one already. Yet we are almost losing our hearing.
Maybe everyone in Lagos needs to go for noise therapy.
Just maybe that will be my campaign point when I eventually run for office.