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Experts seek standards for construction process

By Tunde Alao
25 January 2016   |   2:53 am
FRESH efforts to rid the construction industry of structural failures got underway recently in Lagos, where  built environment professionals canvassed for proper management and accreditation of drillers and other people that are engaged in the foundation process. They expressed the need for such artisans to come together under one umbrella to acquire knowledge to enhance their practice and…
 Assistant Director, Lagos State Building Control Agency, Mr. Gbolahan Oki (left); President, Nigerian Institution of Structural Engineers, Mr. Oreoluwa Fadayomi; Senior Research Officer, Nigerian Building and Road Research Institute, Mr. Atomen Edom; and Coordinator, Building Collapse Prevention Guild, Kosofe Cell, Mrs. Jane Ogbu, during a forum for foundation practitioners and drillers by BCPG Kosofe Cell, in Lagos, recently

Assistant Director, Lagos State Building Control Agency, Mr. Gbolahan Oki (left); President, Nigerian Institution of Structural Engineers, Mr. Oreoluwa Fadayomi; Senior Research Officer, Nigerian Building and Road Research Institute, Mr. Atomen Edom; and Coordinator, Building Collapse Prevention Guild, Kosofe Cell, Mrs. Jane Ogbu, during a forum for foundation practitioners and drillers by BCPG Kosofe Cell, in Lagos, recently

FRESH efforts to rid the construction industry of structural failures got underway recently in Lagos, where  built environment professionals canvassed for proper management and accreditation of drillers and other people that are engaged in the foundation process.

They expressed the need for such artisans to come together under one umbrella to acquire knowledge to enhance their practice and introduction of standards in the construction process. The move will ensure that drilling exercise is no longer of all comers affair.

Chairman of the occasion and the President, Nigerian Institution of Structural Engineers (NIStructE) Oreoluwa Fadayomi, expressed concern on the frequent cases of building collapse that are traced to foundation problem.

The NIStructE chief who viewed that foundation is the bedrock of building construction, noted the importance of carrying out proper soil investigation, geotechnical engineering in foundation as w means of solving the problem of building collapse.

Fadayomi charged operators in the industry to be conscious of their inputs in the construction process, urging them not bow to pressure to compromise standard in carrying out their work.

He particularly charged the drillers to come up together as an association so that people can easily identify the experts among them from those that do not really have the experience but are operating in the profession.

Corroborating Fadayomi, the Ikeja cell coordinator of BCPG, Mr. Frank Ikuewam, called for innovation in drilling system, adding that some of the artisans have been using the same instrument over the years.

He however, advocated for accreditation of drillers and other people that are engaged in foundation practice, urging the drillers to form an association to enhance their welfare and potentials.
He added that safety measures is a very important issue which many people do not take serious in the process of building construction.

The Coordinator of BCPG Kosofe Cell, Mrs Jane Ogbu, said that the workshop is first in the series for the group in the year aimed to prevent building collapse particularly at the foundation level. “We are very concerned about this embarrassing situation whereby building collapse becomes a rule rather than exception. Therefore, it became imperative in view of the crucial role foundation play in building  construction that we put in place measures that can stand the test of time”, said Ogbu.

Representative of Nigeria Building and Road Research Institute (NIBRRI), Edom Atomen, said the major problem that is common to other sectors is implementation of the law and rules that guide activities in the sector.

He said different problems may arise in the process of erecting structures but that the most important thing is for soil investigation to be done before erecting any structure.

National President, BCPG, Mr. Kunle Awobodu, a builder, stressed that collapse of buildings has become a menace in Nigeria particularly in Lagos.
According to him, the problem of foundation failure is common in Mende, Ogudu, Soluyi and Kosofe areas of the state where foundation sinking is frequent issue, adding that it is even more embarrassing when pile foundation is failing in some of these areas.

Representative of Lagos State Building Control Agency and Director, Post Construction Audit Department, Mr. Oyewale Joseph, an engineer, said the volume of construction work going on in Lagos is more than anywhere in Africa. He blamed part of the problem on the corrupt attitude of people.