Assistant Chief Fire Officer One (ACFO I), Joy Ameyibor Ayim, Volta Regional Fire Commander, has commended the Fodome Traditional Area for partnering the Ghana National Fire Service (GNFS) to protect the environment from the fire.
He said fire fighting was a shared responsibility and the Service alone could not do it but through a collaborative effort between the Service and the citizens.
ACFO I Ayim inaugurating 65 volunteers made up 41 males and 24 females in Fodome after three-weeks intensive training, said bush burning in communities had become the order of the day.
“Bush burning in our communities has become the order of the day and it destroys food crops, medicinal and trees, wildlife and in some cases, loss of lives and property as well as pollution and environmental degradation.”
He urged the Area to offer the necessary assistance and support to the volunteers so that they could perform well to enable others to be encouraged and attracted to join them.
ACFO I Ayim tasked the Area to create forums for the volunteers to educate the citizenry to prevent bush fires in and around while appealing to stakeholders to supply working tools for the volunteers to function well and achieve their goal.
He called on the Municipal Assembly and the traditional authorities to team up and establish bushfire preventive fund.
ACFO I Ayim noted that District Assemblies must support the rural fire departments of the Service with motorbikes to facilitate bushfire prevention.
He called on the volunteers to keep their morale high all the time and not relent on their core mandate nor be discouraged.
ACFO I Ayim appealed to the Area to cooperate with the volunteers because they could not deliver on their mandate with the necessary assistance.
He also noted that Fodome was strategically located, and noted a fire station would be beneficial.
Mr Fabian Kwame Alex Kwamuar, Secretary to Togbega Gbedegbleme Akpatsa II, the Paramount Chief, bemoaned the extent to which bushfires destroyed crops, plants and animals in the Area.
He said the phenomena had led to the Area instituting measures to curb the menace through bye laws.
Mr Kwamuar said the Area with the support of the GNFS formed the fire volunteers and would continue to support the initiative in making the Area free of bushfires.
Assistant Divisional Officer Grade Two (ADO II) Amenyo Gallen, Volta Regional Deputy Rural Fire Coordinator, noted that most people were no longer ready to avail themselves as volunteers since working tools were mostly not available after their training.
He urged the citizens to volunteer to be trained since their efforts would help the Service in discharging its duties.
Mr Victor Kudo Sylvester, a Volunteer noted that although the training was tough, being a volunteer was a proud moment and would help to prevent bushfires in Fodome.
Madam Kotoh Delali, another Volunteer said preventing fire would help develop communities and urged citizens to partake in volunteerism projects.