The Minister of Disaster Management and Refugee Affairs, Seraphine Mukantabana, has commended the Rwanda National Police (RNP) efforts to fight and prevent fire outbreak.
The Minister, who was speaking yesterday in Prime economic zone in Masoro, Gasabo District to launch the campaign against fire outbreak, said that measures taken including community awareness and increasing its response capabilities protect Rwandans against disasters.
The campaign is in the context of Police Week.
Minister Mukantabana, however, said that fire outbreaks lead to enormous economic loses and sometimes loss of lives.
“Most fire disasters can be avoided if people are cautious, listen and follow guidelines provided by experts in dealing with potential causes,” she said.
She went on to urge property owners to take precaution and acquire portable fire extinguishers which can be used in emergency situations before the arrival of professional firefighters.
Minister Mukantabana further asked the business community and individual households to always take insurance cover for their facilities against risks in case of such disasters.
Present at the function was the Inspector General of Police (IGP) Emmanuel K. Gasana, the Mayor of the City of Kigali Pascal Nyamulinda and the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Trade, Industry and East Africa Affairs, Ms. Rosemary Mbabazi.
Mayor Nyamulinda also advised against using lay professionals in electricity installations and using substandard electrical equipment.
The Commanding Officer for the RNP Fire and Rescue Brigade, Assistant Commissioners of Police (ACP) Jean Baptiste Seminega, while speaking at the same occasion, noted that most causes of fire outbreaks investigated have been predominantly caused by poor or illegal electric installations, overloading the system, and unattended candles in homes.
He, however, said that today RNP has increased its capacity and skills to put out any fires reported, on time.
The force currently has firefighting trucks stationed at the regional level with plans to acquire more to be stationed at the district level.
As part of the response to fire, RNP and the City of Kigali also established water hydrants in strategic parts of the city for easy access to water sources need to put out fire.
Meanwhile, during the launch of the campaign, the Police firefighters demonstrated their capacity and capabilities to put out fire in real time.