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Engineers seek new policy to drive industrialisation

By Victor Gbonegun
20 September 2021   |   4:10 am
Professionals under the aegis of Ikeja branch of the Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE) have called on the Federal Government to develop enabling policies and guidelines that would drive the growth...

NSE President,<br />Babagana Mohammed

Professionals under the aegis of Ikeja branch of the Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE) have called on the Federal Government to develop enabling policies and guidelines that would drive the growth of engineering in the country.

They stated that it’s important that engineering is properly developed before Nigeria could talk about industrialisation. The experts stated this at the yearly engineering week of the branch entitled, ‘Integrated engineering development as a catalyst for homegrown industrial revolution’ organised by the branch in Lagos.

Leading the call, the chairman of the branch, Mr. Olutosin Ogunmola said with the poor state of the economy, it was important to put a spotlight on industrialisation of the economy, which should be anchored on engineering development for home-grown industrial revolution.

He said: “We are indeed a struggling nation because Nigeria isn’t a production economy. Any nation that is not producing what it consumes cannot have a vibrant economy. Stakeholders in engineering must work together in developing the profession. It is important that engineering is properly developed before we can talk about industrialisation, and we have been particular about it to give it the colouration of being our industrial revolution.”

The engineering week kicked off with an interactive session, awareness on vehicle roadworthiness at Iju-Ishaga Motor Park in partnership with Vehicle Inspection Service, National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) and other activities.

The forum also featured the presentation of awards to Lagos State governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, the minister for Interior, Rauf Aregbesola, the chairman of Dangote Group, Alhaji Aliko Dangote and others as the outstanding engineering personality while Dangote Industries ltd, Kenol Nigeria ltd, Pilot Science Nigeria ltd, emerged as an outstanding engineering organisation.

Ogunmola said stakeholders, which include academia, higher institutions, research institutes, the industry and government need to work together to ignite a home-grown industrial revolution. He advocated for a policy that would enforce engineering standards for Nigeria.

“Up till now we are still using the British standard rather than have an engagement for Nigeria standard across the engineering spectrum. There was a need to bring all the stakeholders together rather than each working in a silo. It is time to build Nigeria so that we can bequeath to future generations.”

Ogunmola disclosed that the branch was developing an engineering resource centre, called ‘centre for integrated engineering development’ that would house a hub for innovation incubation and product development in its secretariat.

Speaking during the award night, the Group General Manager/Human Resources, Dangote Projects, Fola Ali, urged professionals to do more in capacity development and encourage collaboration among members. He said: “If engineers collaborate it would boost manufacturing, address capital flight and enhance local capacity development.”

Recognising the role of collaboration in growing the economy, the Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola, said collaboration is key to closing the gap between power generation and distribution while calling for the adoption of clean energy as well as energy mix.

Represented by his Special Adviser, Mr. Bola Ilori, Aregbesola challenged engineers to do more to boost the capacity of young engineers through mentorship.

The representative of Lagos State governor, Mr. Rotimi Thomas, who is the permanent secretary, Office of Infrastructure, lauded the society for its programme. He charged them to focus on local content development.