As part of its resolve to help minimise incessant cases of building collapse and fire outbreak in the country, the Federal Fire Service(FFS) has indicated that it would commence inspection of public buildings for compulsory compliance with its policy on safety code.
The acting Controller-General of the Service, Dr. Liman Alhaji Ibrahim made this known when he received the permanent secretary, Ministry of Interior, Bar. Georgina Ehuriah who paid a familiarisation visit to the service headquarters yesterday in Abuja.
Ibrahim said the agency was making effort to ensure the huge loss of lives and property due to engagement of quacks, who in turn use
substandard materials on public buildings, are minimised, even as he called for the review of the 1963 Fire Service Act which had become obsolete.
He averred that critical stakeholders need to look at the Federal Fire Service Policy so they can come up with an articulate position that will meet modern challenges.
“We need to consider and review the policy in order not to only make the service efficient but ensure that our objective of public service
is met. Where laws exist and nothing is done to enforce it, then you cannot hold people responsible. As it stands now, we can only bark but we cannot bite. We can uncover and sue those found wanting but we are not empowered to seal off such premises,” he said.
The service chief promised to ensure that the standard of the service was upgraded through training and provision of modern equipment for it to deliver on its mandate.
According to him, “We will do everything possible to raise the standard of fire service to international level in terms of training nd discipline.”
To this effect, he revealed that plans to purchase additional 18 fire fighting equipment from Austria and Turkey had been concluded, saying when purchased, the service will open more fire stations at zonal and state levels to ensure that they get closer to the public.
In her remarks, Ehuriah charge the leadership of the fire service to intensify efforts by liaising with regulatory agencies to ensure safety of the Nigerian populace.
Her words: “Make demands from builders, send quacks out of business by regularly inspecting buildings from foundation as well as electrical appliances from construction stages to ensure maximum safety.”