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Engineers seek indigenous codes, standards

By Victor Gbonegun
05 June 2023   |   2:41 am
Engineers under the aegis of Nigerian Institution of Mechanical Engineers (NIMechE) have decried the use of imported codes and standards, which are alien to the industry.

Engineers under the aegis of Nigerian Institution of Mechanical Engineers (NIMechE) have decried the use of imported codes and standards, which are alien to the industry.

The National Chairman, Mrs. Funmilade Akingbagbohun, expressed this concern at a virtual national workshop organised in collaboration with regulatory agencies, tagged: ‘Promoting the Adoption of Codes and Standards in Nigeria.’

She said there was a need to promote indigenous codes and standards that address Nigerian environmental needs and offer solutions to challenges confronting all facets of the engineering related fields.

Akingbagbohun said NIMechE has initiated activities geared towards development of specific codes and standards, as well as revising others that are outdated. “Codes and Standards are associated with the rules and regulations of the art, science and practice of mechanical engineering. Codes and standards establish minimum acceptable levels of safety, quality and reliability.

“The workshop is an avenue for us to contribute to the body of knowledge needed to evolve a new document for Nigeria,” she said. She said the institution is poised towards professional development and capacity building, as it plans to deploy resources in training of both young engineers and up-skilling of the established engineers to ensure competitiveness in the industry.

The Chairman, NIMechE Codes & Standards Committee, Mr. Seun Faluyi, said developing standards helps to optimise operations, improve performance, enhance customer satisfaction and increase sales.

He said: “Standards help to prevent trade barriers and open up global markets, increase productivity and competitive advantage, as well as help in protecting the environment. Standards facilitate collaboration with other stakeholders by establishing the rules of the game, making it possible to eliminate players who fail to comply. Standards enable companies to increase their ability to export. Standardisation gives greater control over safety-related problems.”

Faluyi said a new regulation and standards would promote trade and commerce, quality, industrialisation and safety. He said the institution would support regulatory agencies with a skill pool to develop, domesticate or review standards or guidelines for local application.

He said the organisation would also provide skilled manpower and institutional support for inspection and certification purposes, as well as monitor activities of its membership and network with outstanding academics, practitioners and enthusiastic students.

He pledged mechanical engineering collaboration with stakeholders in aviation, building, construction, roads, oil and gas, industrial, power sector, maritime and environmental sectors.

Faluyi said: “Upon completion of the drafting of the NIMechE codes and standards, the committee will forward it to the Nigerian Society of Engineering (NSE), as well as partner with the regulatory agency to commence its adoption as a Nigerian standard.”

Vice Chairman, NSE Abuja branch, Ahmed Kutigi, said: “The teaching or inclusion of engineering codes and standards has been neglected or eliminated over the years, which affected our designs as engineers. Preventing or reducing failures and ensuring end-user safety are critical aspects of engineering design.

“Wherever engineering codes and standards are not adequately taught in our institutions, the engineering systems design would be undermined and the resultant outcome will be negative on safety.”

“When codes and standards are developed through the traditional strengths of the Nigerian content system, it will promote public good, enhance the competitiveness of industry, safety and contribute to a liberalised global trading system.

“Codes and standards provide engineers with benchmarks of performance, safety, reliability, failure resistance, sustainability or other specifications to be met or exceeded during the design, development and test process,” he said.