Second woman state fire chief

Woman in the hot seat: Siti Rohani (second from left) getting to know Johor Fire and Rescue Department officers.

JOHOR BARU: Siti Rohani Nadir became only the second woman in the country to become the head of a state Fire and Rescue Department when she was appointed Johor’s chief fire officer.

The new state director said she was prepared to take on the challenge and would give her fullest commitment to the job, just like her male colleagues.

“We know that there are not many women officers in the department. There are only about 4% of women officers compared with men in the department,” said the 52-year-old mother of five from Parit Sulong in Batu Pahat.

“However, I do not see this as an issue.

“At the end of the day, the job is the same whether you are a male or a female.”

She said that as state director her top priority would be addressing the lack of firefighters and assets.

There are some 144 vacancies for firemen in the state, which also needs 54 fire engines for its 33 stations.

“The issue has yet to reach a critical point, but it could affect operations, especially since Johor is a state that has been attending to the second highest number of operations after Selangor.

“We understand that it will take time and proper planning for the issue to be tackled at the headquarters level, but I hope that it can be addressed in stages,” she added.

Siti Rohani was speaking after a welcoming ceremony when she clocked in for the first time at the state Fire and Rescue Department headquarters yesterday.

She added that a new batch of firemen would complete their training by the end of this year.

“We are unsure how many of them will be posted to Johor but I hope that this would at least reduce some of our manpower issues,” she said.

Siti Rohani, who started her career in Negri Sembilan in 1997, said she would continue carrying on programmes and policies that were progressing well in Johor.

“Johor is a large state and there will be some challenges that we would need to face, including in terms of manpower and preparation for the ongoing monsoon,” she said.

The first woman to head a state department is current Perak fire chief Sayani Saidon.

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