Ahead of the general elections, the Federal Fire Service (FFS) has said it will deploy resources and its personnel to some polling units, wards, Local Government state collation centres to ensure safety of Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) property and provide secure environment for the citizens.
Speaking at a one-day brainstorming session for the forthcoming election by top management, head of department and commanding officers, Wednesday in Abuja, Controller General of the FFS, Engr. Jaji Abdulganiyu, also sounded a note of warning against those attacking firefighters on duty, saying the federal government has vowed to deal with anyone cought in such act.
He said: “The recent fire attacks on INEC offices and personnel nationwide have heightened the need for this brainstorming session. It is essential that we come up with solutions to these problem in order to ensure the safety of INEC infrastructure, personnel and the integrity of the electoral process.”
According to FFS boss, the brainstorming will come up with solutions to some of the problems already identified in other to ensure the safety of INEC infrastructure, personnel and the integrity of the electoral process.
He said the Service has set up a comprehensive fire safety plan that includes: Increased fire safety inspection, Fire prevention and protection measures and and increased presence of fire personnel in areas prone to fire outbreaks.
“To achieve the above listed, the following should be done; Fire personnel will be on standby to respond to any fire incidents that may occur during and after the election, Fire safety education and awareness campaigns will also be conducted to ensure that citizens are well informed on fire safety measures and protocols and the Federal Fire Service will work closely with local fire departments and other emergency services to ensure that all fire incidents are dealt with swiftly and effectively.”
While commending President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration for his support, the Controller General said: “FFS received 8 numbers of the state-of-the-art Fire Trucks, whilst expecting 15 numbers of Rapid Intervention Vehicles in the coming days. I am pleased to inform our audience that the Minister, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola has graciously approved with immediate effect the deployment of the trucks to the following states: 2 numbers are to be deployed to Kano and 1 each to Kwara, Oyo, Edo and Lagos. This will go a long way to further strengthen our fire fighting infrastructure across the country especially as the election draws closer.”
On the attack on the firefighters, Abdulganiyu said: “I am also using this medium to condemn any and all attacks on fire fighters in the strongest possible terms. We will take appropriate action against the perpetrators of these attacks within the confines of the law. We will not tolerate any form of violence against those who risk their lives to protect us and our communities. We must ensure that our fire fighters are safe and secure while they are at the job.”