By Victoria Onehi
The Controller General, Federal Fire Service Engr. Jaji O. Abdulganiyu, has assured Nigerians that the Service is prepared to ensure fire cover for all before, during and after the election.
Abdulganiyu was speaking during a one day Brainstorming Session on providing Fire Cover for the forthcoming General Election by Top Management, Head of Departments and Commanding Officers at the FFS HQ, on Wednesday in Abuja.
“Nigerians will be going to the polls and it is of utmost importance to our democracy and the integrity of the electoral process.This is why, our duty to ensure fire cover for all and sundry, before, during and after the election has become a current imperative.”He said.
Abdulganiyu noted that the recent fire attacks on INEC offices and personnel nationwide have heightened the need for the service to come up with solutions to these problem in order to ensure the safety of INEC infrastructure, personnel and the integrity of the electoral process.
“I am confident that with the hard work and dedication of my officers and men of the Federal Fire Service, we will be able to ensure the safety of polling units, ward, local government and state collation centres, as well as providing a secure environment for citizens to cast their votes.
“To ensure the fire safety of all citizens during and after the general election,the Service has set up a comprehensive fire safety plan that includes increased fire safety inspection, fire prevention and protection measures and increased presence of fire personnel in areas prone to fire outbreaks.”Abdulganiyu said.O
He said the Fire Service Personnel will be on standby to respond to any fire incident that may occur during and after the election adding that 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.
Abdulganiyu thanked the President Muhammadu Buhari led administration for its unwavering support to the FFS as it just received eight state-of-the-art Fire Trucks, whilst expecting 15 of Rapid Intervention Vehicles in the coming days.
He said the Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola has graciously approved with immediate effect the deployment of the trucks to the following states. Two are to be deployed to Kano and one 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.
He commended two officers ACG Chika Njoku and Ag. ACG Daramola Clement Taiwo, for their exemplary performance during the last Governorship election held in Osun and Ekiti State stating that their professionalism and dedication to duty were exemplary.
The CIG however condemned attacks on firefighters stating that appropriate action will be taken 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.”Abdulganiyu said.