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Engineers plan new building practice to curb structural failures

By Collins Olayinka, Abuja
20 March 2023   |   3:47 am
The establishment of a building engineering practice and governance will help tackle building collapse in the country, Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE) has said.

Nigerian Society of Engineers

The establishment of a building engineering practice and governance will help tackle building collapse in the country, Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE) has said.

NSE President, Tasiu Gidari-Wudil, who stated this in Abuja while commemorating the World Engineering Day (WED), bemoaned frequent collapse of buildings in the country. He said: “NSE views with severe dismay and as a national disgrace, the recent collapse of a three-storey building on 6th Avenue, Gwarimpa District, Abuja. This unfortunate incidence is the latest in the unmitigated trends of shameful and avoidable building collapse incidences across Nigeria, which have resulted in humongous deaths and maiming of innocent Nigerians.

“These disasters are outcomes of ineffective compliance, breakdown of regulatory control, official negligence and failure to stamp out building design and construction incompetence and quackery.

“It is the NSE’s well-considered view that henceforth, a determined precedence should be set for deterrence and as part of the healing balm for victims of this disaster by fully implementing the reports of the investigations.”

The NSE stated that henceforth, the criteria and approval process for buildings should be more rigorously observed, and that any subsequent events such as this building collapse should be treated clinically and with utmost severity.

Gadari-Wudil revealed that the body is spearheading the adaptation of curricula and teaching methods to ensure that engineering professionals and students are innovative and are capable of developing new skills.

“Additionally, training programmes are being created and developed to upskill and reskill NSE members to meet the demands of the 4th Industrial Revolution (4IR). The Society is also setting a model for Engineering innovation, and as such is currently executing the SMART Office Project. This project comprises an innovation hub, automation and engineering lab, AI/IoT hub, virtual offices, SMART Physical offices, E-library and training facilities,” he explained.

The NSE chief added that the project will create an enabling environment for innovations, research and development, product development, entrepreneurship and business development and ease of doing business for engineers and other stakeholders.

While calling on the Federal Government to implement Executive Order 5 especially sections 7(2) and 8(1), the society stated that despite the abundance of databases for engineers, technologists and artisans in Nigeria, it finds many expatriates of equal qualifications with Nigerians while some are without skills at all in construction companies across the country.

“We do not find this acceptable. Therefore, on Thursday, March 2, 2023, I led a delegation of some of our past presidents and Executives on a visit to the Honourable Minister of Interior. We have drawn his attention to this anomaly and stressed the need for those sections of the PEO 5 to be implemented to the latter. The Minister has given us assurance on positive actions in that regard,” he said.

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