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Engineers canvass unified action against building collapse

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Tasked on industry-specific projects

The Nigerian Institution of Structural Engineers (NIStructE) has called for concerted efforts among stakeholders to end the collapse of buildings and bridges in the country.

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The President, Kehinde Osifala, who stated this during its yearly conference in Abuja, stressed the need for advocacy and public enlightenment on the dangers and economic implications of substandard structures. 

Osifala said: “It is unwise for anyone to build without advice from a professional engineer because competency of those who construct buildings are required to prevent loss of lives due to building collapse. 

Speaking on ‘Structural Engineering Practice, Local Content, Infrastructure, and Economic Development’, he said the major reasons for building and bridge failures include, the use of substandard materials, quacks, failure of designs during the construction.

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According to Osifala, the government needs to give local engineers the opportunity to showcase their talent instead of giving contracts to foreigners.

“Government should allow Nigerian engineers to partner with their foreign counterpart as a means to exchange ideas because, at the end of the projects, the foreigners will leave the country while the Nigerian counterparts would be left to manage the structures.

The institute’s Deputy President, Peter IgbiniJesu called on stakeholders to support engineers in their quest to impact positively on Nigeria’s economy and move the profession to a great height.

MEANWHILE, chemical engineers have been told to focus more on industry-specific projects in construction and manufacturing that would benefit the people and economy.

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A former official of the Raw Material, Research and Development Council (RMRDC), Dr. Daniel Ayo, led the call during the yearly public lecture and 80th birthday of Emeritus professor of chemical engineering, Alfred Susu, organised by the Nigerian Society of Chemical Engineers (NSChE), Lagos/Ogun Chapter in Lagos.

The forum, held virtually, attracted the president, Nigerian Society of Chemical Engineers, Onochie Anyaoku, a pioneer lecturer and former head of Department of Chemical Engineering, Unilag, Professor Ayodele Francis Ogunye, friends and students of Prof Susu.

Dr. Ayo explained that if projects are industry-specific, students would be able to relate with them, and that would promote stronger relationships between the industry, academia, government, and the private sector.

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Speaking on ‘Beyond Oil and Gas: Chemical Engineering in Nigeria’, he emphasised that practitioners should explore the vast opportunities offered by chemical engineering.

He advised upcoming engineers to emulate Prof. Susu by working hard, be determined to succeed, and prepare to make sacrifices.

The President, Nigerian Academy of Engineering (NAE), Alex Ogedengbe, who doubled as chairman of the occasion, urged upcoming engineers to emulate the celebrant’s excellent devotion to the teaching profession, loyalty, and contributions to the chemical and petroleum industry.

In a remark, the Chairman, Lagos/Ogun Chapter of NSChE, Dr Kamilu Oyedeko, said that Prof. Susu’s worthy contributions to the development of chemical engineering in Nigeria deserved commendation and celebration.

He described him as a patriotic Nigerian who treasures diligence in his professional career and development of the chemical engineering profession.

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