Bayelsa State Government says it has constituted a committee to investigate the cause of the fire outbreak that gutted some parts of the Mechanic Village along Imiringi Road in Yenagoa destroying properties worth millions of naira.
Governor Douye Diri, who disclosed this yesterday, said the committee headed by the Commissioner for Trade, Industry and Investment, Hon. Stanley Braboke is also expected to ascertain the level of damage caused by the unfortunate incident and suggest measures to forestall future occurrences.
A section of the heavily congested mechanic village hosting spare part dealers, auto mechanic, panel beaters, electricians, AC repairers among others was razed down in the early hours of Sunday. Represented by his deputy, Senator Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo, the governor empathized with all those affected by the inferno which reportedly occurred at about 3am on Sunday.
He thanked God as no life was lost and also commended officials of the Fire Service for their prompt intervention that saved the automobile village from total destruction. The governor said steps would be taken to decentralize fire service stations in the Yenagoa metropolis as part of measures to further improve on time during emergencies.
According to him, fire fighting trucks would be stationed in strategic areas such as Etegwe-Tombia Junction, Igbogene and Swali for quick intervention to save lives and property in the event of any fire incident.
He also said the state government would relocate the Mechanic Village to an appropriate and a more conducive location in line with extant environmental laws and best practices. “On behalf of His Excellency, the miracle Governor of Bayelsa State, we want to empathize with those who have lost properties in this unfortunate incident.
“We thank God that the fire service responded immediately. That is the essence of having the fire service. We are going to look at the possibility of having other stations in close proximity. If the distance was shorter, I am sure more properties would have been rescued.
“We are going to look at the possibility of decentralizing the fire station, to have more stations across the state capital. This government will try and position fire trucks in strategic locations like Tombia Junction, Igbogene and Swali areas,” he said. Earlier, the Chairman of Spare Parts Dealers Association at the Mechanic Village, Mr Sunday Okoli, commended the governor for the visit and show of sympathy, noting that the gesture would go along way to encourage those affected.
He appreciated the security operatives for promptly alerting the fire service as well as helping to secure the scene and its vicinity to avoid theft during the incident. Other members of the investigative committee who accompanied the Deputy Governor on the visit include the state Commissioner of Police, CP Mike Okoli and the Commissioner for Local Government, Chieftaincy and Community Affairs, Chief Thompson Amule.