The Inquirer is a leading independent daily newspaper published in Liberia, based in Monrovia. It is privately owned with a "good reputation".

Fire Service Chief Craves
For Budgetary Increment

By Bill W. Cooper
The Liberia National Fire and Rescue Service (LNFS) Director, Alex K. Dickson, has stressed the need for the increment of the fire service budget in the national budget to enable it perform effectively.
“It is no secret that the Fire Service is faced with numerous challenges and in order for those challenges to be addressed, there is urgent need for government to see the need to increase the institution’s budget,” Col. Dickson said.
He made the assertion over the weekend, at the graduation ceremony of 135 new firefighters at the Barclay Training Center (BTC) in Monrovia.
The graduates comprising of 94 females were trained in different types of firefighting sciences for about six weeks and by six international trainers from the United States of America, Ghana and Nigeria, among others.
The fire service chief who used the occasion and described the continuous fire outbreak across the country as a national emergency said, “While we appreciate the government for the support, there are more still needed to be done for the institution to adequately carry out its core functions in terms of fighting fire.”
Giving the statistics of fire outbreak in the country, Col. Dickson said his entity has recorded about 46 residential fire cases with three deaths from January to May, 2022, stressing, “With this number, we can now say the fire outbreak is now becoming a national emergency’ and we urged the public to apply all preventive measures in order to be on the safe side.”
He further revealed that when he took over the service as Director, the institution had only one fire truck, noting, “But through consistent engagement with various stakeholders within four years, the government was able to procure six additional fire trucks which are currently being used.”
The Fire Service Chief however disclosed plans for the procurement additional eight more fire trucks along with an ambulance anytime soon, adding, “Today we all can see what is happening in Ukraine with firefighters on the front line helping to save lives and protecting properties, but this will only happen when your men are trained and this is why we continue to train firefighters.”
Meanwhile, Col. Dickson has also disclosed plans for the construction of a modern corporate headquarters of the National Fire Service in the coming months, adding, “from 1963 to 2022, the Fire Service has been in a rental building, but we with the help of our partners, we will soon be moving into our own building on Ashum street.”
Earlier, Deputy Finance Minister, Samora P.Z. Wolokollie urged the graduates to use the knowledge acquired and help in the rebuilding process of Liberia.
He then thanked the LNFS Boss and his team for the significant improvement and upgrading of the fire service while at the same time assuring government’s fullest support towards the institution.

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