Building Collapse: NIOB renews call for building laws enforcement

The Nigerian Institute of Building (NIOB), has renewed calls for the engagement of professional builders in construction production management towards ending ugly trend of building collapse in the nation.

NIOB Lagos Chapter Chairman, Mr Sunday Wusu during a press briefing on Thursday to announce its ‘2021 Builders’ Day also called for enforcement of laws to ensure compliance with construction standards.

Wusu said that several people were ignorant of the role of builders who have both the scientific and practical knowledge of how buildings should be constructed.

He explained that some people confused builders with civil engineers, adding that, builders training was more indepth and specific in managing building production.

He said that the builder was trained to coordinate civil engineers, architects and other professionals while managing materials and human resources to achieve durable construction.

“Building collapse is 100 per cent avoidable, because building construction is a scientifically efficient process.

”And the first step in avoiding building collapse is to ensure that the entire production process is handled by relevant professionals, with the builder being the pivot professional,” he said.

Wusu listed important stages in building production backed by the Lagos State Building Regulation, 2019, and the National Building Code which empowered the builders to oversee the processes.

He said it was illegal not to have certified builders on project sites, and called for political will on the part of government to ensure enforcement and compliance with building laws.

He said NIOB was adopting measures to ensure compliance and enforcement of the Lagos State Regulation through its collaboration with relevant agencies of the government.

The NIOB boss said that the 2021 Builders’ Day was being used to create awareness to let the public know that it is important for them to ensure that only professional builders handled their projects, adding that, professionalism would eliminate substandard construction and building collapse.

He said the 2021 Builders’ Day tagged “Professional Builders’ Engagement in Building Production Management” was focusing on creating awareness on engagement of professional builders.

He added that the climax of its weeklong programme which started on March 8 would be on March 13, the date was chosen as the Builders Day to commemorate the death of over 20 children in a five-storey residential building collapse in Ita-Faaji, Lagos Island in 2019.

Wusu said the date was also to remember victims of building collapse across the nation as well as those affected by poor building production.

He said NIOB Lagos Chapter would offer free site services on Builders’ Day being Saturday, March 13 to visit projects sites and to correct the wrong things being done.

He stressed that Saturday was a good day to pay a surprise visit because quacks trying to evade state regulations usually built secretly at night; or weekends when the enforcement officers were off duty.

Also, Dr Kudirat Zakariyyah a fellow of NIOB from the University of Lagos, Department of Building said that the women’s wing of the association were creating awareness to bridge the ignorance gap.

Zakariyyah who represented national Chairperson, Association of Professional Women Builders of Nigeria (APWBN), Mrs Adenike Said’ said the team visited two schools on Wednesday in its continuous enlightenment campaign.

Other members of the exco present at the briefing, took turns to shed light on efforts of the institute to uphold ethical conducts in the built environment to rid Lagos State of incessant building collapse.

They called on other professionals in the built environment and artisans to stay within their jurisdiction to ensure things are done properly to avert disaster.