The Chairman, FCT Chapter of the Nigerian Institute of Building (NIOB), Bldr Omale Peter Ameh on Wednesday, reiterated the commitment of the Institute to the pursuit of an organized built environment in the country. He said built environment professionals must be accorded the patronage they deserve for the orderly production of buildings and infrastructure in the country.
Omale, who is a key figure in the longstanding advocacy for the passage of the National Building Code, said the institute will not be daunted by delays and challenges militating against the passage of the code, stating that hope is in sight especially with the current National Assembly.
The chairman, who spoke at the Year 2022 Conference and Annual General Meeting of the Chapter, in Abuja, described the spate of buildings collapse in the country as “a continuous sad commentary that has led to unwarranted loss of lives and properties,” stating that it is an embarrassment to built environment professionals.
He therefore explained that in order to effectively respond to the challenges of building collapse in the country, the FCT NIOB AGM Planning Committee opted for the theme, “Curbing the menace of building collapse in Nigeria: An appraisal of the salient issues,” stating that the engagement of professionals will proffer solutions to the challenge.
He expressed concern that the lack of collaboration by professionals in the building and construction industry, and the indiscriminate importation of substandard building materials, as well as the lack of adherence to regulatory framework are some of the most visible problems and challenges which has led to building collapse and unwarranted loss of lives and properties.
He expressed optimism that deliberations at the conference will proffer solution to the challenges.
While saying that “quackery also remains one of the major problems of the built environment despite efforts being made by the institute and other professional bodies to address the issue,” he called on the 9th Assembly to pass the National Building Code (NBC) into law, assuring that the institute will continue to agitate for the passage of the Code.
“We will continue our advocacy and public enlightenment activities, we wish to call on government and relevant stakeholders to rise up to the challenge and call on the National Assembly to expedite action, and pass the NBC into law and enforcing it as it remains a key-gate to the production of safe buildings in Nigeria.”
Omale said if passed into law, the National Building Code will serve as ‘key’ to addressing the challenge of building collapse in the country.
The Chairman said: “Professionals of the built environment will readily agree that one of the greatest challenges of the Nigerian built environment is the need for appropriate regulations, effective enforcement and the application of sanctions and punishments to erring offenders in the sector,” stating that until the protocols are put in place and until quacks are expelled from handling construction works, buildings may continue to collapse while the people suffer the loss of lives and property.
The FCT Chapter of the institute brought together, highly versatile professionals as resource persons to share their experiences toward enriching the practice.
While commending the chapter for their support, Bldr Omale particularly commended a former Registrar of the Council of Registered Builders of Nigeria (CORBON), Bldr Aliyu Ajari Ova; the immediate Past Vice Chairman of CORBON, Bldr. Dr. Samson A. Opaluwa; Convener of the Construction Artisans Awards (CAA), Bldr. A. A. Okwa; Bldr. A. A. Alao; Bldr. Emmanuel Blessing; Bldr. Mrs. Florence Akinayoade; and Bldr. Victoria Gana among others.
Secretary General, Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Prince Adebiyi Adetosoye commended the chapter for its choice of the topic, “Curbing the menace of building collapse in Nigeria,” saying that it is apt considering the spate of building collapse in the country.
He further commended the chapter for its commitment to interrogating the subject, stating that it is only when professionals are accorded their rightful patronage that the challenge of building collapse will come to an end.