Editorial

The rampancy of fire

Odongo Odoyo

Topical Commentary

With Odongo Odoyo

By Malek Arol Dhieu (Guest)

Fire is deemed highly disastrous because it spares no utility including the metallic ones. Other disasters such as floods, hunger, famine, and drought are soft to escape or control, but escapees and controllers of fire are very few. If there is wildfire, then there can be tame fire. And if there are people who are blamed for not controlling the wildfire, then such people can even be blamed to death for not controlling the tame fire. Reports of fire outbreaks are ear-piercing in South Sudan but the authorities concerned seem to be reluctant to rein them in for the safety of the citizens. It happened that I was given a patient burnt by wildfire to care for at Juba Military Referral Hospital, it was dismaying that I felt like rebelling to become a General in Fire Brigade so as to defend the societies with the national mandate. Believe me, I almost went to the previous training field in Ethiopia to get trained on how both wild and tame fires can be controlled, but I was relieved by the full recovery of my patient. Within Juba City, outbreaks of fire are rampant, with the major ones being those of Jebel Market, Konyo Konyo Market, Custom Market and Gudele. Thousands of properties got burnt, topping the pre-existing sufferings of the citizens to the extent of nebulosity. What exaggerates the sufferings of the fire victims is the fact that the authorities tasked with their compensations go quiet when the time to compensate the victims has ripened. What shallows the fire extinguish cars of the Fire Brigade, now vividly renamed the Civil Defence Force remains research to conduct. If the cars are leaky, let them be repaired because once they are called to extinguish the fire, they shortly run out of water. Sometimes the control office often says the cars are scarce, and that, the ones on duty have gone to extinguish the fire at X and Y residential areas.  I think the poor management has now gone with the name “Fire Brigade” and so, improvements in the management of fire are expected from the reborn “Civil Defence Force”. Fires claim lives more than other disasters, hence the Civil Defence Force should redouble its vigilance in making sure any outbreak of fire is curbed before it intensifies the ongoing sufferings and, without shortcomings. 

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