Fire outbreaks in markets between January, 2015 and March, 2016 have claimed 600 lives and properties worth N5.30tn, the Controller-General, Federal Fire Service, Joseph Anebi, has said.
These, he said, included N2tn property lost in the recent fire incident at Abubakar Rimi Sabon-Gari market, Kano.
Anebi said this during his visit to the Governor of Kano State, Dr. Abdullahi Ganduje, according to a statement on Tuesday in Abuja by the FFS Public Relations Officer, Elechi Collins.
The CG attributed the inability of the fire service to respond to fire outbreaks in time to inadequate fire stations, lack of fire hydrants and water source dedicated for fire fighting.
Other factors, he added, included compromised access to the markets by illegal structures, improper housekeeping, flagrant abuse of power generators, poor fire safety management and control due to low personnel strength and absence of sustained training and re-training.
He called on all stakeholders to support government efforts towards finding solutions to the incessant fire incidents in markets, stating that the FFS was prepared to partner with the state government and relevant stakeholders to address fire outbreaks in the markets.
The CG highlighted the partnership between the FFS and the Niger State Government for the upgrading of its fire service, which, he said, was in progress.
Anebi added, “I want to urge other states to collaborate with us to combat fire outbreaks and its attendant loss of lives and properties in the country. Between January, 2015, and March, 2016, fire outbreaks claimed 600 lives and properties worth N5.30tn.
“Over N2tn was lost in the recent fire incident at the Abubakar Rimi Sabon-Gari market alone and I would like to commiserate with the governor and the traders over this loss.”
Ganduje commended the CG for finding time to visit the scene of the fire disaster in order to reappraise the situation and make necessary recommendations to forestall a recurrence.
He promised to strengthen the Kano State Fire Service for optimal performance, commending the fire personnel for working hard to stop the fire from spreading to structures outside the market. Punch