As fire fighters continued to be attacked by mobs in Kogi State, the Federal Fire Service has threatened to leave the state if it cannot protect personnel and assets.
The threat followed a recent attack on firemen by hoodlums while responding to a fire alert in Lokoja, the state capital.
According to the spokesperson of the Service, DSF Ugo Huan, the attack occurred along Felele road when firefighters were responding to a car fire at Al-Salam fuel station opposite the Kogi State Polytechnic.
He said, “a mob armed with dangerous weapons began to attack the truck which was conveying firefighters, thereby destroying parts of the truck and injuring firefighters who are currently receiving treatment at the hospital”.
He noted that the Police and the Chief Security Officer of Kogi State Government House had been briefed about the matter.
Reacting to the incident, Controller General of the Service, Dr Liman Alhaji Ibrahim has described the attack on firefighters and fire trucks by hoodlums as unacceptable, vowing that the attackers would face the law.
Dr Liman in a statement said “his directive of blacklisting any community who continuously attacks firefighters still stands and that henceforth any state government that can not ensure the protection of Federal Fire Service, firefighters and equipment in their states will leave the Service with no other option but to withdraw its presence from the State, as he will not fold his hands and watch his men being maimed and killed as well as fire trucks worth millions of Naira been destroyed.
“The Controller General who said this attack which is one amongst many has further proven his call for the establishment of an armed squad in the Federal Fire Service known as Fire Police who will be saddled with the responsibility of protecting firefighters and fire trucks at fire scenes because these hoodlums are emboldened to attack firefighters because they know that they don’t have the protection of armed men.
“The CG has called on the Governor of Kogi State, His Excellency Yahaya Bello to address this barbaric act by citizens of the state so as to avoid its reoccurrence”, the statement added.