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Federal Fire Service And The Selfless Task Of Saving Lives And Property

 

The achievements of the Federal Fire Service (FFS) is often unnoticed as silent achievements have been its mode of operation since its establishment as an arm of the Lagos State Fire Brigade in April 1963 with currently 12 Zonal Commands and presence in all the 36 states including the Federal Capital Territory. The hard work and dedication of the gallant men and women of the fire service is least appreciated.


The FFS is not profit-driven but rather community-driven, with one mission of saving lives and property . That is why the FFS is resilient in carrying out its activities. While understanding that it is not profit-driven, one can not help but also notice that in 2020 alone, FFS saved N1.351 trillion worth of properties, and 1,110 human lives were also saved from fire disasters. Since the appointment of Dr. Liman Ibrahim as Controller General of the FFS in March 2019 by President Muhammadu Buhari, the FFS response has significantly increased, from 2020 to the first quarter of 2021 the FFS received 4,541 fire calls nationwide and the maximum turnout time of the firefighters after receiving an emergency call is 3 Minutes.


The Federal House of Representatives has started the process of amending the FFS act to include flooding, building collapse, air, road accidents, and other emergencies. This comes as been the first responder to emergencies and as a result of the sublime achievements by the FFS in mitigating fire disasters and combating fire emergencies across the country. The bill would provide additional powers for effective service delivery in tackling other emergencies.


The FFS under the leadership of Dr. Liman Ibrahim has exhibited an act of heroism at this period of Covid-19 pandemic by ensuring the decontamination exercise is carried out relentlessly and Professionally. The FFS partnered with the Ministry of Environment to achieve the decontamination exercise. 


A Covid-19 response team was constituted in every state across the nation equipped with well-trained men and women of FFS and representatives of the Environmental Health Officers Association of Nigeria (EHOAN) and Environmental Officers Registration Council of Nigeria (EHORECON) in handling the chemicals used during the exercise. The decontamination exercise was a huge success and has often been referred to as one of the most successful and effective Covid-19 exercises in the country. 


The good work of the FFS under the leadership of Dr. Liman Ibrahim is still faced with many challenges across the country. The effectiveness of the FFS in different locations across the country is hindered mostly by bad roads, traffic, distance from the fire station to the scenes, lack of proper description of the exact location, attack on trucks and officials.


Dr. Liman Ibrahim, the Controller General of the Federal Fire Service (FFS) during his speech to mark the international firefighters' day celebration, a day set aside to celebrate firefighters worldwide after a tragic bushfire in Australia that killed five (5) firefighters in 1999. May 4th of every year is a day to celebrate firefighters worldwide,called on every citizen to show support to the firefighters for their sacrifice in saving lives and property , as attacking the firefighter while carrying out his duties is a disincentive to the fireman. Firefighters dead or alive should be applauded for risking their lives while saving others.


The current administration of President Muhammadu Buhari has tremendously supported the FFS. The administration approved a N10.4 billion infrastructure upgrade for the firefighters through the Ministry of Interior headed by the Minister of Interior  Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola. The Minister who has been very effective in carrying out his duties since his appointment as a Minister, commissioned the newly procured equipment which includes 20 Newly acquired Life-Support ambulances, 7 Fire Fighting trucks, 44 Fire Fighting engines, 15 Water tankers, and 15 rapid intervention Fire engines amongst other important pieces of equipment to ease the activities of the FFS and to promote effectiveness. A gesture that was worthy of applause. 


With its presence in all 36 states including the Federal Capital Territory, more support is still required to ensure the FFS is totally in control of all the responsibilities saddled upon it.

The FFS with Dr. Liman Ibrahim as its head is geared towards achieving its full potential. The Federal Fire Service has never been this visible to every Nigerian. Dr. Liman Ibrahim's proactive response and vast knowledge are unmatched.


 President Muhammadu Buhari has indeed put a round  peck in a round hole with his appointment. The FFS is  taking a fresh dimension in saving lives and property. Nigerians are finally feeling the impact of having a functioning FFS. Nigerians are watching with excitement and keen interest as the Federal Fire Service moves carefully to greater heights.

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