Concerning Tinted Vehicle Glass – All You Need To Know By CSP Frank Mba

CSP Frank Mba
By CSP Frank Mba

The Police High Command has observed with concern the unnecessary controversies that have trailed the recent IGP’s announcement on the ban on the indiscriminate use of tinted glasses on vehicles plying Nigerian roads.

The Force has observed that one of the issues that has generated so much contention and sometimes endless arguments between Police Officers enforcing the ban on the one hand, and motorists on the other hand, is the contention by some vehicle owners that there is no valid law restricting the use of tinted vehicle glass in Nigeria. Others who claim to be aware of the legal restriction argue that because the tints on their glasses are ‘factory-fitted’, they are under no legal obligation to obtain a permit. Yet, others hinge their arguments and objections on the fact that their car tints are not as dark as others and thus, should be excused from the requirements of obtaining permits.

While some of these arguments may sound persuasive or even plausible, they are unfortunately devoid of any known legal foundation. Nigerian Laws are unequivocal in their restrictions on the use of tinted vehicle glasses. For instance, regulation 66(2) of the National Road Traffic Regulations (1997) provides that:

‘All glasses fitted to a vehicle shall be clear and transparent to enable persons outside the vehicle see whoever is inside the vehicle and the glasses shall in no way be tinted except as may be approved by the Inspector-General of Police for security reasons.’ (Emphasis mine)

However, it will appear that the most comprehensive legislation on the use of tinted car glasses in Nigeria is the Motor Vehicles (Prohibition of Tinted Glass) Act, CAP M21 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria (Formerly Decree No. 6 of 1991).

According to Section 1 (1) of this Act, except with the permission of the ‘appropriate authority’ and for ‘good cause’, “no person shall cause any glass fitted to a vehicle to be tinted, shaded, coloured lightly or thickly, darkened or treated in any way so as to render obscure or invisible persons or objects inside the car”. Under the Act, it is also an offence to aid, counsel or procure the commission of the offence. From the reading of the law, it is clear that the law made no distinction between manually fitted tints and factory fitted tints.

For purposes of the Law, ‘appropriate authority’ refers to the Inspector-General of Police (IGP) or any other person duly delegated by him, while ‘good cause’ means health or security reasons. The implication of the above is that it is only the IGP or any such person or persons duly authorized by him that can issue a tinted glass permit. In addition, such a permit can only be issued on health or security grounds.

Owners of vehicles with tinted glasses are therefore mandated by law to seek the authorization of the IGP before deploying such vehicles on our roads, whether such vehicles came with factory tints or whether the tints were manually fitted. However, by the operation of Section 3 of the Act, such persons – importer, buyer, donee - have 14 days grace, from the date of the purchase of the car or the date of arrival of the car in Nigeria (whichever is applicable) to either remove the tinted glasses or obtain the tinted glass permit.

Persons convicted for committing offences under this Law are liable to a fine of N2,000 or imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months or both fine and imprisonment. Where the offence is committed by a corporate body, the Police may by the operation of Section 4(2) of the Act, proceed against its director, proprietor, manager, or other senior officers of the organization.

It must be noted that legal restriction on the use of tinted car glasses is not peculiar to Nigeria. There are many countries – both developed and developing - with similar restrictions. The law is designed to promote and protect the collective security of all, through visual transparency. It reduces the chances of persons plying vehicles with opaque glasses from ferrying dangerous objects such as explosive devices, arms, ammunition and other incriminating materials undetected from one part of the country to the other. It is also designed to enhance the smooth discharge of Police duties, by making the monitoring of motorists easy. It is therefore advisable that persons without good reason to use tinted glasses in their cars should refrain from doing so.

In Nigeria at the moment, the decision by the Police High Command to ensure a strict enforcement of the relevant laws prohibiting unauthorized use of tinted glasses on our roads is predicated on the need to effectively tackle contemporary security challenges in the land and ultimately serve the common good of all Nigerians. Intelligence reports and empirical statistics at the disposal of the Police Force indicate that majority of crimes relating to terrorism, suicide bombing, kidnapping, gun-running, human trafficking, armed robbery and other related offences are committed with the use of vehicles with tinted glasses. Perpetrators of these heinous crimes hide under the cover of tinted glasses to ply their nefarious trade. It has therefore become a matter of urgent national security importance that indiscriminate use of vehicles with tinted glasses be checked in accordance with our laws.

The good news however is that the Law authorizes the appropriate authority (in this case the IGP) to issue tinted permits to Nigerians on health and security grounds if they are so qualified.  Persons desirous of obtaining tinted glass authorization are advised to follow the following steps:

(a)  Write a formal application to the IGP for the use of factory tinted glass, stating the reason for use, bearing in mind that approval of such application is predicated on health or security reasons only.

(b)  Applications should be accompanied with the following:

(i)  Photocopies of all relevant particulars of the vehicle.

(ii)  Photograph of the vehicle.

(iii) Profile of the applicant with relevant background information.

(iv)  Passport size photograph of the owner of the vehicle.

(v)  Any other supporting document/information that may help to justify the request.

The Police authority conscious of the fact that some unscrupulous Police Officers may take advantage of the new regime of enforcement to engage in the harassment and extortion of helpless motorists, has issued strong warnings to all Policemen charged with the responsibility of enforcing the law to ensure that they act within the confines of the enabling laws and the Police Code of Conduct at all times. Command Commissioners of Police have been charged to ensure strict supervision of men deployed for these duties while the IGP Monitoring Units have been empowered to arrest and bring to book any officer found acting in a manner inconsistent with his or her oath of office.  Police Officers are also warned to desist from harassing Nigerians who have already obtained valid tinted glass permits, as provided by the extant laws.

Finally, the Inspector-General of Police calls for the support, understanding and cooperation of all Nigerians, including corporate citizens as the Force embarks on a strict enforcement of the tinted glass laws.


The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of SaharaReporters

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Tinted from the Factory.

The law says:
“no person shall cause any glass fitted to a vehicle to be tinted, shaded, colored lightly or thickly, darkened or treated in any way so as to render obscure or invisible persons or objects inside the car”. The police gloats that "it is clear that the law made no distinction between manually fitted tints and factory fitted tints".
If a car leaves the factory with its glass tinted, how would the Nigerian who buys it [3rd or 4th hand] for use here be deemed to have "caused" its glass to be tinted? The operative phrases here are "any glass fitted to a vehicle" and "to be tinted". Any glass fitted to a vehicle means "the state of the glass on the car when it left the factory, a finished product".
If the glass of the car left the factory tinted, the buyer(s) of the car should never be held liable for the tint on the glass by any reasonable law. Shouldn’t we be seen to be making and implementing reasonable laws in Nigeria?

Tinted car glasses.

It is a right step in right direction considering the present national security challenges. More effort should be made to sensitise people more on this on radio, television and other social media means.

why are you not commenting on the 2 salient issues

I was reading comment about such in India, a commentator said, please leave India if u cannot abide. The same rule is all over England, all arguing security as focal point of argument. The country is nt too safe for the time being.
Nigerians are just pretenders, its the same sun you stayed to play football, u trekked to school in the same sun, farm etc, now that you have money to buy cars, the sun suddenly has UV.
If at all tinted glasses are required, then limit the opacity. Let everyone be able to see though, don't let create scenario where people will be raping/abusing/having sex in the cars.

At last the IG has buckled

At last the IG has buckled and given in to the muster in the force that makes corruption part and parcel of the police force. Shame. It is only a gimmick to return to the old era.
With or without tinted glasses, criminals will still have a field day. They employ the police as their errand boys.
At the end of the day, only the good, law abidding ones suffer. This country continually push sane persons to the wall....

I know more attacks have been

I know more attacks have been perpetrated on okadas than vehicles with tinted glass, what d'u intend to ban in


Since the police high command has issued directives to all stations to arrest. Vehicles with tinteted glasses, what difference will it make if we continue to debate this issue. The last time it was banned about 3 years ago, those with factory tinted were exempted and in fact were told that no permit was required to drive a factory tinted glass vehicle. Now that the police has reversed itself, my appeal is that all with factory tinted glasses should be given a reasonable time - say 2 months to obtain the permit, otherwise all police stations will be like garages for vehicles with tinted glasses.

Tinted Vehicle

The laws shown here for Canada are helpful laws, designed to safeguard users on the highway. In as much as i despise the Nigerian version of the same, the most relevant things the people need to know are ; 1)How much is the permit. 2)people that have acquired this permit previously, what becomes of the permits they have. 3)since there were no receipts for the permits previously acquired, what stops a corrupt policeman from try to extort from someone who has a permit claiming the permit is fake. 4) if there are fake permits, how do we identify them to the police if they claim not to know ? The questions go on and on. Oga Mba, the all we need to know essay is grossly useless, please update and address with relevant answers.

If Mba isn't aware he should

If Mba isn't aware he should know now; criminals are very law abiding people. They normally obey all laws to hide their identity; it makes commiting the crime easy for them. Besides, I don't like the blanket statement about crimes with tinted glasses. Gives us statistics so we can make an informed analysis whether crime with tinted glasses is increasing. The blanket statement shows you are ONLY ASSUMING!

Stupid Law, Stupid Police, Stupid IG, Stupid President & Stupid

Trying to use a military decree to justify stupidity.

"Motor Vehicles (Prohibition of Tinted Glass) Act, CAP M21 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria (Formerly Decree No. 6 of 1991)". Bla bla bla.

Does Nigeria manufactuire cars, No. Does Nigeria make car glasses, No. Does Nigeria make tinten foils, No. What does Nigeria know about cars? Next to nothing, except maybe it's glasses!

It's only the stupid politicians, who doesn't even know the IGs address that are allowed to use tinted glasses. And they don't even need permits.

In the countries where the cars are made, it is illegal to carry children if cars glasses are not tinted in order to avoid the harmful effects of the sun on the children. And 80% of vehicle owners are families.

In Nigeria, everything is reversed and up-side-down.

May God punish all of una, stupid people!!!

Tinted vehicles giasses

Frank, you used to be my man in a very controvercial Nigerian ministry. You ve just let me down now. Your boys stopped me at Ilupeju on this tinted glasses wahala. You
ve dissapointed me.

Frank Mba's place of origin.

Frank Mba is an Igbo from Nsukka, Enugu State.


@ Bassey,

You are either trying to be mischievious or you truly did not understand the Canadian example you have posted here.

First, the Canadian regulation applies to people "colour coating," "spraying," or "coating with reflective materials" ie, adding cellophaine shields to thier windshields after buying their vehicles. In effect, the regulation is saying leave the vehicle glasses/windshields with the material or tint it came with from the manufacturers.

Second, the regulation is applicable only to the HIGHWAY.

Please lets not confuse or obsfucate issues.


Lousy Nigerian police will never cease to disappoint! Corruption has eaten deep into their thieving heads.


With tinted glasses (which are that way to offer the people in the vehicle - especially the driver - protection against the sun) you can see into the vehicle. It is only opaque glasses that blocks vision from the outside

There's no other country in the world that has a ban on tinted glasses. And there's no country in the world that citizens pay money DIRECTLY to the IG of police.


God punish ALL Nigerian police.

Tinted Vehicle Glasses

This is the correct position As long as the vehicle was made with tinted glasses, it is legal and lawful to be used as such without reference to anyone. The question though is: Where the police, as in this case, exhibits crass ignorance in interpreting a law, the damage it inflicts on society is incalculable. All the reason we remain undeveloped in a fast moving world.

Are You Igbo?

I dont have any problems with what Mr. Mba said. My problem is that he does not look like an Igboman, although he has Igbo last name. So, Mr. Mba, are you Igbo?

I really do not want to

I really do not want to respond or comment on the above article by the Police PRO, however all the Police wanted to do is to "legalize" the activities of there men on the road. The Police check-point at Umunya-Anambra State, on last Tuesday packed over 30 vehicles collecting different amount of money for not having the so-called permit. The Nigerian public are again suffering from issues that are not suppose to be issues.
There are more pertinent issues that needed attention than the matter of tinted glass and also the PRO should also advise motorists on what to when police extorts as a result of not having the permit.

Chasing shadow

Criminals doesn't obey law and therefore will always obtain and use whatever they need (gun, bullet prove, tinted glass, etc..).

What if criminals use vehicles such as bus, pickup and van without glasses?
All govt need is to fight corruption from the top. Computerize all vehicle plates and train your police to work like European and USA police(stop collecting bribes).

Nigeria doesn't even manufacture auto glass talkless or automobile.

In Saudi, 90% of vehicles are tinted because they hide their women. Northern Nigerians should also like thinted .

Nigerians I think will always

Nigerians I think will always argue anything that the Police try to do. Of course we know why, they cash in on any law and use it to exploit even law abiding citizens. but there are other Countries that have laws like this. check:
And of course we know the Security situation in our country, I do not mind a little inconvenience if it has the potential of saving the life of few Nigerians.

Mr Mba can you publish the

Mr Mba can you publish the list of people that have gotten this permit and what qualified them for the permit. The IG has fallen into your trap since he stopped road block. Another OIl WELL for the police

1of2 Legal view re: Tinted vehicle glasses

Re: "According to Section 1 (1) of this Act, except with the permission of the ‘appropriate authority’ and for ‘good cause’, “no person shall cause any glass fitted to a vehicle to be tinted, shaded, coloured lightly or thickly, darkened or treated in any way so as to render obscure or invisible persons or objects inside the car”. Under the Act, it is also an offence to aid, counsel or procure the commission of the offence. From the reading of the law, it is clear that the law made no distinction between manually fitted tints and factory fitted tints.

2of2 Legal view re: Tinted vehicle glasses

Sir, with due respect, the law did not make distinction between manually fitted tints and factory fitted tints.! However, it does seem you may have overlook the "no person shall cause..."; What, if the vehicle is tint fitted before it was brought to Nigeria, can you inscribe that the owner has cause it to be fitted? Your position in my humble view can not stand when put to test in proper Court; hence the provision of Section 1 (1) must be seen as not applying to vehicle already tinted before arriving Nigeria.
The solution is to amend the law; perhaps stop importation of all tints vehicle considering our peculiar security challenges. Lastly, it is clear that you did not mentioned whats the official and legal fee for obtaining the permit. Please complete your clarification.

Tinted glass ban

These writer is as stupid as is statement, why would he abuse somebody after the explanation dat was issued concerning the use of tinted glass, am ashamed of him and will tell him to go around the world and see that there are laws everywhere and citizens adhere to it. The reasons given are simple and if we as Nigerian will want to tell ourselves the truth, it will be known that with the present security challenges we are passing through it has become paramount for us to be of assistance to the security team which the police is part of. Looking at constructively tined glasses enable people to pass with illegal items around without been noticed. So abide by our laws. Thank you.

how about the old permit for tint glass

we have alot of security challenges on our hand like arm robbers, boko haram, tugs, militants, bad police who believe there are on the road to make money. IG should focus on solving the insecurity in Nigeria instead of looking for money to make. also what about vehicles that already have tint glasses before, are u guys saying they are now invalid, who will pay back the money use to process it .

tint permit

N30,000 for a tint permit is too much. Just a sheet of paper and nothing else,another money making venture. Imagine the amount of factory fitted tinted cars that flood Nigeria everyday,multiply that with N30,000. I think the force should stop all these distractions and focus on the real issue on ground (i.e ensuring that lives and properties are secured). lets not be deceived.

Fact: The permit cost N30000

Fact: The permit cost N30000 to get and is available to anyone. if IGP is ignorant of this then he must be an ostrich with his head buried in the sand.
If you really want to enforce the law, just deal with it from the ports not on the roads. With more pressing problems, how can he responds expediously to the numerous applications that will flood his desk especially assuming the health or security of the applicants are at risk?
By the way has he investigated the Gov who said he replaced the winners name with that of the loser and made the loser the senator of the federal republic of nigeria? a crime punishable by a jail term of 14 years in the U.S
Governors are not immune to investigation o!!!

Mba you are becoming a let down

This is the most stupid law ever create by a bunch of hopeless idiots, I use to have some respect for this police spokeman but it seems like every other idiot in the force he is an ass. No where in the world would have a backward and oppressive law against your own people like in Nigeria.

For people to either change their car glass or take a permit from the IGP? It is a very dumb idea. Nigerian are complaining of too much pain and poverty and you are expecting them to suffer more pain by paying bribes to have a bespoke car get a permit? How backward can we get in this day and age.

Grow up you ass holes

The best thing to do is for

The best thing to do is for owners of factory tinted cars to pick a date and stage a demonstration.

DPO of Rumuolumeni in port harcourt collects N5,000.00

CSP Mba, if what you are saying is true then the DPO of Rumuolumeni, Iwofe Rd Port harcourt must be charge for extortion. He collected N5,000(five thousand naira) each from nothing less than 30 Jeeps on Saturday March 30, 2013 for alleged tinted glass and is still collecting

Mr Mba, So What Do We Do???

I live in Lagos, bought my car from the US, the rear windows are fairly darkened, though if you move close you can see the inside from outside.

I don't have any "Health/Security" reason to qualify for a tint permit. So what should i do?

I think you need to go back to the IGP and have a rethink on this because millions of vehicles are like mine. Do we start replacing these windows, break them off or stop driving our cars?

This is just an opportunity for your boys to start harassing motorists and in no time we're going to hear of a driver shot to death by the police for refusing to stop/settle due to darkened windows.

The police should critically

The police should critically look inwards and stop this kind of press releases. It is a big shame that one IGP after another will resurrect this issue of tinted glasses in cars. Is it truly for health and security of Nigerian or for the health of ‘their’ pocket? These guys are the law and can stop the importation of such cars if it is within the ambit of our law. The reference to other nations where the uses of tinted glasses are band should be substantiated and their peculiar cases properly cited. Going forward, police as the enforcers of the law, should ask car users to wind down to see what’s in their car, focus on pure Intel for crime fighting rather than the ‘hold it there’ attacks on road users.