Fire Service Boss Threatens to Shun Emergency Calls over Staff Molestation

Comptroller General of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Col. Hameed Ali (rtd.)

James Emejo in Abuja

The Comptroller General (CG) of the Federal Fire Service, Mr. Ibrahim Liman, yesterday warned that he may be forced to ignore emergency fire incident calls in areas where the safety of its personnel and firefighting assets are endangered by the people.

Commenting on the fire safety awareness level in the country, he said his officers had been subjected to all sorts of molestation, including stoning and destruction of fire assets, whenever they responded to fire incidents.

Speaking to journalists at the unveiling/demonstration of new advanced firefighting equipment at its headquarters in Abuja, he said: “Anytime our men turn out to fight fire, they (people) don’t know which station they are coming from, they start stoning them, thereby injuring our staff in the process and destroying the equipment.”

He said: “But I have warned before now and I am still warning again that any area that does not exercise restraint if there is fire, we will not respond unless the elders in that area talk to the youths because we cannot afford to lose our firemen and expensive equipment.

“So, I am appealing to the youths in these areas to please be friendly with our firefighters anytime they respond to firefighting calls.

“But where that is not achieved, honestly, I think I may take the next action by not responding to emergency in such area.”

However, the fire service boss said the new advanced firefighting new technology manufactured by Advanced Firefighting Technology (AFT) in Germany entails the deployment of special pickup vans which are mounted with water pumps and unique liquid solutions to access area where its conventional heavy-duty trucks cannot access and put out fires more effectively.

According to him, “We are trying to acquire this because there are areas that are not accessible by the big trucks and so we need to acquire some of these ones to cover such areas. And from what we are seeing from the demonstrations, we are satisfied.”

Meanwhile, Director at AFT Germany, Mr. Nabil Saad, said the new technology known as MBM Combat utilises low pressured gas and liquid to put out big fire in an easy manner, adding that it is the most economical solution for modern firefighting.