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11 Ways To Avoid Police Harassment While Driving



11 Ways to Avoid Police Harassment While driving

Even when you have satisfied all their requests to prove that you have not violated any law, Nigerian policemen, especially at the checkpoint, can be incredibly irrational. Their sometimes deliberate ignorance can be astounding. A Nigerian police officer, especially at a road checkpoint, have a way of inventing offences that you have committed.

And when they fail to establish any crime or offence against you, they resort to all manner of delay tactics in an effort to frustrate you. Of course, you know why. Typically, they do that so you would be left with no choice than to part with some cash.

Of course, wisdom dictates that you don’t engage them in arguments, especially when they are armed with a gun, most especially in the covers of the night. They often complain about the ubiquitous checkpoints, which many feel have been set up purely to extort bribes.

Indeed, Nigerian police are among the worst paid in the world. However, their unprofessional and corrupt actions at checkpoints often give you a reason to lose sympathy for them. This is why it is sometimes advised that you avoid crossing paths with them entirely on the road altogether.

In this article, we highlight some tips on how to avoid harassment from the Nigerian police while driving.


1. Know their itinerary

Avoid roads that the police are likely to have mounted roadblocks or checkpoints. Seek alternative routes, and use them.


2. Act responsibly

Do not be unnecessarily cantankerous towards these men in black. No matter how much of your right you know, Nigerian police will invent one reason or the other to delay you at the spot. When dealing with them, be courteous. Smile, be polite and avoid being hostile to them.



3. Know their timing

Avoid movements during periods that policemen are likely to mount roadblocks. If possible, avoid driving late at night.


4.  Have your papers intact

Always drive with all your car and driving particulars intact.


5. Avoid Violating Traffic rule

Desist from actions or inactions that constitute either a criminal or traffic offence. Such infractions of the law provide justifiable grounds for forms of police harassment or possibly an arrest. So, abide by all traffic rules.


6. Don’t treat them disdainfully

They are humans too. Like every human, they appreciate respect. Don’t demean them.



7. Avoid unnecessary arguments

Avoid arguments with the police at checkpoints. The Nigerian policeman is designed never to agree with your point of view, no matter how rational. Especially when there is something pecuniary at stake. Often, arguing with them is an open invitation for them to delay you.



8. Slow down as you approach the checkpoint

Slow down at checkpoints. Not slowing down is a recipe for unnecessary harassment at checkpoints. Also, ensure the car’s interior lights are on if it’s at night.  Keep your hands visible to avoid making the police officers nervous. All these douses suspicion that you are a criminal or that might want to speed off.


9. Speak like an enlightened person

Speak clearly and firmly when talking with the Police officers.  Engage them like an enlightened person. Speak proper English Language. Do not raise your voice. Use well-articulated speech to put them in their place. But don’t sound condescending.


10. Dress Responsibly

Impressions are created in the minds of police officers by the way you are dressed while driving. Avoid dressing in ways that might create an erroneous impression about you to the police. Dress decently while driving.


11. Use Public Transport

If your car papers are incomplete or have expired, in order to avoid a confrontation with police in traffic, take public transport. You can request for a ride on Uber or Bolt (Taxify). This would save you a lot of avoidable harassment from the men in black.

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