By Eric Elezuo
Most people have different views as it relates to the over flogged issue of vandalism, but the more the government try to cushion the effect, the more it intensifies in proportion. In this chat with Mrs. Joanna Omoneni Owolabi, Agency Manager, Hamptons Travel and Tours and social commentator, she shed more light on vandalism. Excerpts:
Could you please describe vandalism in your own terms
Vandalism is the unlawful destruction of properties, mostly government property for no justifiable reason. The act can be psychologically induced, just for the love of destruction or complex where one believes that if you can’t touch the hen, then break its egg.
Also, it can be a societal trait exhibited because an individual had live among vandals all his youthful life, and has might found it very difficult to let go or just derive joy in vandalism.
What and whose property forms the target of vandalism
Government property is often the target of vandalism, and it is mostly during demonstrations. This could because the word government connotes a faceless person when the situation becomes bad, hence one can only attack its representative, which in this case is the property. Also, often when people cannot reach the government officials or anyone with whom there is a grouse, anger is therefore vented on the property representing the subject so they could be heard.
Is there any special reason why people engage in vandalism
Yes, the reasons can include psychological problems as well as the need for vengeance, just like an eye for an eye. Again, most people involve themselves in this act because they have seen it happen many times in their presence without the perpetrator being punished.
There is a special case of people engaging in vandalism of government property each time there is a crisis. Why is it so
Like I said earlier, it is because there must be somebody to release anger on. More so, there is this erroneous belief that government property is no one’s property, and so it can easily be destroyed, and replacement made with hassles. There can be three classes of these vandals; first is the hoodlums, who see it as opportunity to steal or register their so called displeasure; the middle class, who use it to register their dissatisfaction as regards issues of injustice and, wait for this, the rich, who uses it to show superiority.
Let’s assume people vandalise property because they were angry; why is it they don’t destroy their own property whenever they are offended
It is this psychological thing, but extreme vandals do and those who are mentally deranged. The sane are mindful of what is theirs, and would not bring them to destruction no matter how offended they become.
Is there any remedy for this untoward action of the people
Yes, there is, and it requires seriousness to achieve. In the first place, proper sanction should be applied. The fact that vandalism is mostly witnessed in lawless society, where individuals have turned themselves to law enforcement officers, and carry out this act as a myopic way seeking justice, the real law officers should come down heavily on perpetrators. Again, the society should have CCTv cameras mounted at strategic corners to capture offenders.
Is that all that is required to curtail activities of this nature
There are more, and it can even be unlimited. Government should perform its duties to the people and also provide security for her property as well as re-orientate people to seek redress in law court and not take matters into their hands. Again, government must capture the data of all her citizens, and that’s the only the CCTv thing can make sense because discovering people on CCTv will require locating them. To curb this act the full wrath of the law must be brought against perpetrators to make others desist from the act.
Also the security agent must be on their toes to prevent this act from even happening in the first instance. Finally there is need to re orientate people.
Is there a particular set of people known for vandalism
This act is perpetrated by all levels of people ranging from students, workers, artisans, unions and of course hoodlums during elections and protests among other times.
Is vandalism actually a psychological problem or vendetta induced
Both and more, such as the dire need to wreck someone for reasons as petty as jealousy among others. People also go into vandalism because they feel they are not enjoying any benefit from the government, and that the government is the source of their challenges. Even tax payers, who engage in vandalism do so because and those who pay tax and still engage in vandalism believe they are been used by the government as they don’t enjoy anything in return after paying tax, So I will implore the Government to also look inwardly and attend to the need and cry of the mercies which help to put a stop to vandalism.