By: Joy Odor/Abuja
To combat the fire fighting mobile asset deficit across the country, the Federal Fire Service has commissioned twelve newly procured Modern Fire Fighting Trucks and Water Tankers out of the 44 approved by the Federal Executive Council in 2017 and 2018.
The Controller General, Federal Fire Service, Dr. Ibrahim Liman in his welcome address at the commissioning in Abuja Headquarters Wednesday said the action was an attestation of a positive transformational development since inception of President Muhammadu Buhari administration.
He lamented that although 19 out of the 44 Fire Fighting Trucks and Water Tankers are ready for shipment while 13 at finishing stages of production, the Service cannot take delivery of the equipment due to cuts in its 2018 and 2019 Federal Fire service budget proposal in spite all appealed made to retain the budget.
“Today’s event is an attestation of a positive transformational development which started in the Federal Fire Service since inception of the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari in 2015.
“You may recall that a similar event held sometime in 2017 with the commissioning of forty four modern fire fighting vehicles and water tankers. Today, Mr President is commissioning twelve out of the forty four modern fire fighting trucks approved by the Federal Executive Council in 2017 and 2018.
“Although, nineteen out of the 44 is ready for shipment and 13 at finishing stages of production, the service cannot take delivery of these equipment due to cuts in the 2018 and 2019 Federal Fire Service Capital budget proposal.
“This is in spite of all appeal made to the appropriate authority to retain the service budget as proposed” he said.
Dr. Liman therefore seeks for a special intervention sum of over 9.20 billion naira from President Buhari to enable the Service deliver the remaining trucks to address the increase of fire deficit.
” It is in this regard that l am seeking the intervention of Mr President through the Secretary to the Government of the Federation for special intervention funds in the sum of #9.20b to enable delivery of the remaining equipment as it will go a long way in addressing the fire Fighting mobile asset deficit across the country” Dr. Liman stressed.
Commissioning the fire fighting trucks, President Buhari assured to provide the Federal Fire Service with necessary tools required to secure national assets and critical frastructure thus enhancing economic growth of the nation.
Represented by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr. Boss Mustapha, President Buhari said when the Service is fully equipped and empowered, should and must function as the insurance portfolio of the economy which must be protected against destruction.
He promised to procure more of world class and modern fire fighting equipment to improve the service that would enable it provide fire safety in urban areas and protection of critical assets.
“The Federal government as one of the security Agencies of government shall be provided with the necessary tools required to secure national assets and critical infrastructure thus enhancing economic growth of our nation.
“The Federal Fire Service when fully equipped and empowered should and must function as the insurance portfolio of the economy. The economic portfolio of the nation must be protected by the fire service against destruction by fire and related emergencies.
“The Federal government will continue to procure more of these world class and modern fire fighting equipment to improve the equipment holding of the fire service.
“This will enable the service provide fire safety in more urban areas and protection of critical Assets than was done before now. This is due to the fact that the urban built up environment contained very high risk than the rural areas.
“I therefore on behalf of the Federal government urged the Federal Fire Service to deploy and operate these world class Fire fighting equipment across the country.
“Maintenance of these appliances should be handled by establishing a well equipped standard workshop to be operated by highly qualified technical personnel” he stressed.
Also in her speech during the commissioning, the Permanent Secretary Ministry of Interior, Barrister Georgina Ehuriah urged men and women of the Service to use the occasion to rededicate themselves to hard work in the area of fire prevention, firefighting and the safe guard of lives and property.
She challenged the Service not to forget to extend same to zones, States and private sector as it achieve the improvement of fire fighting infrastructure while the maintenance for the sustainability of the equipment and materials should be it’s watchword.
“The commissioning of these new trucks is indeed a further testimony of the determination of the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari to take the Federal Fire Service to the next level.
“You are all aware of the various major fire around the country in recent times which have reached fightening proportions claiming numerous lives and destroying property running into billion of naira.
“These fire which includes but are not limited to gas and pipeline Explosions, tankers and market fire, industrial and home fire etc have indeed significantly affected the country socio economic development.
“I therefore at this juncture seized this opportunity to Urge the men and women of the service to use this auspicious occasion to rededicate themselves to hard work, commitment to ensure improve service to Nigerians in the areas of fire prevention, fire fighting and the safe guard of lives and property