From Paul Osuyi, Asaba

Recalcitrant motorists dread her. If they beat the traffic light at other junctions, they would surely obey her directive to stop at the raising of one hand.

With the raised hand and/or a staff at the popular Konwea Junction along Nnebisi Road, Asaba, the capital of Delta State, motorists, no matter the level of speed, screech to a halt, in apparent obedience to the non-verbal command of Woman Inspector Mary Akaeze.

The dexterity the diminutive officer and a mother of two, brings into traffic control at the troublesome Konwea Junction has won her laurels.

Inspector Akaeze recently won another award conferred on her by the Association of Community Newspaper Publishers of Nigeria (ACNPN), Delta State chapter.

It was the seventh in the series of award she has won since she assumed duty as the traffic control officer.

Initially deployed to the ‘C’ Department  (Logistics and Supply) of ‘A’ Division, Asaba, but as a result of lack of man power in the traffic unit of the division, Inspector Akaeze was called upon to assist in traffic control.

Speaking with our correspondent shortly after the ACNPN award, the awardee thanked the organisers, adding: “I am very grateful to God for keeping me alive in the land of the living to witness this day.”

Akaeze said she was inspired to give her utmost best in service to father land by the lines of the ‘Nigeria Pledge.’

“When I was in the primary school, we used to sing the national anthem and the pledge where we pledged to serve with all our strength.

“When I got the job, I always talked about that line of the pledge “I pledge to Nigeria, my country, to be faithful, loyal and honest…’

“When I was recruited and even at ‘A’ Division, I found myself in the traffic section, I just have to exercise that strength.

“I believe in one thing, when you exercise your power, the person along the road there will appreciate you and what you are doing.

“When you exercise your strength to show that you are diligently doing your work, the public will appreciate you. Moreover, I urge my colleagues to exercise their strength.

“This is the seventh award as a traffic police officer. Each time I do the job, I feel I am doing this job to satisfy my conscience, but I didn’t know that the public was noticing and putting it down,” she added.

Inspector Akaeze, who hails from Nsukwa in Aniocha South Local Government Area of Delta State, said the award by ACNPN was another feather to her cap, and urged her colleagues to be passionate in service delivery no matter the department they are deployed.

“When my younger colleagues hear about this, I believe they will come to exercise their strength and serve the public, which they pledged to do.

“This award is a source of encouragement and empowerment because each time I receive an award, I don’t feel like sitting down but to do more.

“If you don’t have a sense of working with the public, you can be angry at anything. So, keep your temperament outside the job,” she advised.

Akaeze said she is looking forward to her promotion to the next rank of Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP).

“My next ranking will be ASP. When I see myself there in any of the department, I will be there to show direction to the younger ones,” she noted.

Welcoming guests earlier at the award ceremony, chairman of ACNPN in the state, Mr. Jude Obiemenyego, said Akaeze and other awardees were carefully selected for their diligence to duty.

He praised Akaeze for her hard work and dedication to duty, and urged other offices to emulate her.

Obiemenyego said the association would continue to mount surveillance on the society with a view to uncovering ills and celebrating those who are patriotic and committed to societal growth and development.

He therefore, charged the beneficiaries of the ACNPN’s special recognition award to remain good ambassadors of their agencies, maintaining that good name is better than riches no matter how bad the systems has become.

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Source: news