The controller general, Federal Fire Service (FFS), Joseph Garba Anebi said Thursday, that the newly unveiled Fire Alert System Application (FASAPP), a mobile app to reduce the response time of firefighters to fire outbreaks in the country will attract over $10bn foreign direct investment and increase Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) by N10bn annually.
The Fire boss who made the disclosure at a workshop/ enlightenment programme on ‘Enforcement of Fire Alarms and Extinguishing Equipment Regulation’ in Abuja , said the google based technology will also provide ambulatory services.
Describing the move as a notable investment on governments part Anebi said, when fire outbreak occurs, the mobile app has the capability to inform the fire service and the owner of the building simultaneously. He said, “With SmokeCom, an innovative feature of this App, buildings will be registered and fire detectors installed such that, when there is fire outbreak, the fire service and the owner of the building will be automatically contacted. According to him, “By a simple tap on the application, Nigerians can now report fire incidents while the service by the use of google maps would immediately locate the affected area and call back the reporter to ascertain that it was not a false alarm before immediately deploying firemen from the nearest fire station to the scene.
He said, “FASAPP will also help control the use and sale of fire extinguishers by terrorists in making Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs), fight drug trafficking as well as proliferation of small arms among other tasks.”The Fire boss explained that “All fire extinguisher vendors will be mandated to register and will be closely monitored for quality assurance and tracking for security purposes”.
He said FASAPP could be downloaded from all APP stores by simply dialing 7353*300#. Anebi who hailed President Muhammadu Buhari for his special interest in the development of the Service, revealed that before the advent of the administration, the federal safety agency had on several occasions resorted to the use of ‘prayer warriors’ to ensure that fire fighting trucks did not break down while on operations.
His words, “Obviously, when we came on board nearly four years ago, if we were to follow the track of events, nothing was happening here. The Fire Service in Nigeria was moribund, when the available over 25years old firefighting engines were at different stages of scrapping and market fires became uncontrollable and unabated . Today, the Service has been restored.
While unveiling the application, minister of Interior, General Abdulrahman Dambazau (rtd) who was represented on the occasion by the permanent secretary in the ministry, Dr M. B. Umar, explained that in a bid to make fire services available to all Nigerians, the federal government had recently begun the establishment of state commands.
He said, “When I assumed office, I said we have to establish fire services in all states as opposed to having the federal fire service only in Abuja and the geopolitical zones. As a result, government approved the employment of fire service officers. Sooner than later, the employment process will be completed,” he said.