The Controller-General of Federal Fire Service (FFS), Dr Liman Ibrahim, has called on Nigerians to stop attacking fire fighters while on duty.
He made this call while addressing a press conference in Abuja on Tuesday.
Dr Ibrahim lamented that personnel were not safe to discharge their duties any longer as a result of attacks they face while carrying out such duties.
He recalled the attack on men of the service recently in Nyanya, Abuja when they responded to a fire emergency.
The personnel sustained different degrees of injury while the firefighting truck was destroyed by hoodlums.
‘Nyanya axis, a no go area’
The Controller-General has, therefore, vowed not to allow his men respond to any fire emergency in Nyanya axis of the Federal Capital Territory for now.
“Henceforth, when there is fire incident in Nyanya axis, we will not attend to it,” he said.
Dr Ibrahim insisted that the area council and traditional rulers must assure the FFS of the safety of its men before reconsidering its position.
According to him, the FFS is currently working out an arrangement with the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) to provide protection for its men whenever they are on duty.
“We are making an arrangement with the NSCDC to have armed squad to accompany our men to fight fire,” he said.
He hinted that the FFS was planning to have an armed squad of its own but had to synergise with sister agencies for now.
‘N32bn lost to fire in 2020’
Dr Ibrahim said Nigerians lost property worth over N32 billion to fire in 2020.
He said most fire incidents in the country were caused by carelessness by Nigerians.
Other major causes of fire incidents are; power surge, candle, illegal storage of petroleum products and gas linkages, according to him.
He, however, disclosed that the FFS was able to save 1453 lives and property worth N1.351 trillion in 2020.
While rolling out the achievements of the Service last year, he said 36 fire fighting trucks were acquired and deployed, more zonal and state commands were established and 1,276 officers promoted amongst others.