The Controller General of the Federal Fire Service Dr Liman Ibrahim has visited Shehu Shagari Modern Market in Sokoto state and also commiserated with traders over the loss of goods and property worth millions of naira to fire.
Parts of Shehu Shagari modern market, popularly called New Market, was on Tuesday last week destroyed by early morning fire.
Dr Ibrahim said that the visit to the fire scene was to aid assessment, foster investigation and to render adequate advice to the state government on how to curb and prevent future fire outbreaks.
He explained that the incident was an unfortunate one that had led to the loss of livelihood for many due to the devastating impact the fire had on goods of traders.
He assured that the service will continue to do it’s best to reduce the impacts of fire outbreaks when they occur.
He advised the state government to ensure free roads within markets for easy access of fire fighting exercises.
He also stated that there should be sources of reliable water supply such as fire hydrants, borehole and provision of facility for large water storage.
The CG said that from 2019 and 2020 fire statistics, Sokoto, Zamfara and Kebbi recorded the highest number of fire outbreaks during the harmattan season.
The Sultan of Sokoto, Muhammad Abubakar, appreciated the CG’s visit as he stated that the state government had set up a committee to look into the causes of the New market fire incident.
“With the involvement of the Federal fire service and important stakeholders, when conclusive investigative report is put together, we will advise the government to ensure that road blockage is avoided while fighting fire as fire fighting trucks must have access.
“Building plans must be respected as the market was built as one of the most modern markets and it had everything put in place.
“Unfortunately, the various fire hydrants spots now have shops built on them by the same people who we are trying to protect.
“The market needs to go back to the way it was initially built to avoid being caught unaware just as this.
“The committee will come up with recommendations to the government and I urge the government to look into it and see how they could be implemented,” he said.
He urged the Federal Fire Service to train firefighters, acquire more modern firefighting equipment and trucks that can reach fire at every area notwithstanding the roadblocks.