GoL ‘Stepchild’ – Liberia National Fire Service Craves For Support
Monrovia – Highlighting the low key attention given the Liberia National Fire Service (LNFS), the Deputy Chief of Mission at the United States Embassy, Shelia Paskman, says it is a national security issue, adding she is going to advocate for more attention to be given the LNFS.
“It is true that you not getting enough attention and fire service is a serious National Security issue. And so, I will advocate with you. There is a need you get more attention,” Ambassador Paskman said.
Given the keynote address at the celebration of the International Fire Fighters’ Day, Madam Paksman said two major fire incidents at the U.S. Embassy struck a chord in her psyche on the challenges the LNFS is beset with.
“You maybe not be aware of this but during the time that I’ve been here, we’ve actually had two major fires at the U.S. Embassy—the fire service was very quick to respond to our calls,” she said. “We appreciate all that you do with such limited supplies.”
The American diplomat told the firemen and firewomen that being a part of the service means they are part of a brotherhood.
Also speaking, the Director General of the Liberia National Fire Service, G Warsuwah Barvoul Sr. called on the government to increase the capacity of the agency, adding that they have a role to play in the peacekeeping and nation building.
He said the LNFS has been seen as a stepchild of the government because of the backseat role given during decision making.
“We don’t want to be called no more the step child of government. We want to be called the junior boy of the government because when fire comes, the guns will not stop it, baton will not stop it, and grenade will not stop it. It will be these men and women who have laid down their lives to serve humanity. We need support”.
He added: “sometime when we go for meeting, when everything is said about other agencies nothing is said about the fire service. I leave with a broken heart, and sometime I just want to put this thing down and just go do different thing.
But every time I think, I remember the president telling me I challenge you to perform at the fire service. Then again I wake up with the zeal to go further,” Director Barvoul said.
He regretted the absence of lawmakers at the program as, he said, they were written. The LNFS Director General however pleaded with the Legislature to increase support to the Fire Service.
J.H. Webster Clayeh (0886729972)[email protected]