Guild seeks stakeholders’ role in curbing building collapse

The collapsed building in Admiraty way, Lekki, Lagos

To bring sanity in the built environment, the Building Collapse Prevention Guild (BCPG) has called for stakeholders’ commitment towards ensuring adherence to quality, best practices and strict adherence to standards in construction industry.

The guild noted that building control cannot be left for the government alone, hence, stakeholders and volunteers must develop passion for organized and stable built environment devoid of incessant incidences or collapses.

National President of BCPG, Akinola George stated this at a workshop and exhibition entitled; “Preventing Building Collapse through Qualitative and Sustainable Plumbing”, organized by the Amuwo Odofin Cell of the association in Lagos.

George, who is an architect, said the use of sub-standard materials in the built sector has over the years remained the bane of the construction industry.

He regretted that regulatory agencies like Standard Organization of Nigeria (SON) has not been able to really check all products and materials entering the shores of the nation especially through the airports, adding that some town planning authorities have also compromised at the expense of the safety of lives and property of the citizens.

Speaking on the need to solve plumbing problems in buildings, the emeritus national President of BCPG, Kunle Awobodu stressed that the importance of deploying the service of adequately qualified people in construction must not be sacrificed at any time of project development because doing so could bring about humongous catastrophe.

“Plumbers to be engaged in projects must be well trained. The training must be continuous to keep them abreast of new technology and the latest application in the plumbing profession. Naturally, the training should be free. When plumbers are trained, they will deliver the best fittings in building and by so doing, this would help prevent the incidences of building collapses and such cases would become a thing of the pass in the country”.

Awobodu said government should ensure that stiffer penalties are put in place to regulate defaulters of standard practice in construction especially when loss of lives is involved while enabling laws must also be put in place for training and control of artisans, plumbers and craftsman in the industry.

According to him, government should not also relent in ensuring proper monitoring during and after construction for compliance with safety and standards practice adding that ethical contractors and registered architects should carry out construction rather than engaging unskilled professionals.

Commending the organizers of the workshop for the initiative, the Chairman of Amuwo Odofin Local Government Area of Lagos, Valentine Buraimoh stressed the need to make the workshop a continuous one to sensitize the public on the hazards of building collapse. Buraimoh recounted that the state government has in recent times been very concerned about eliminating building collapse and the gesture has really paid off with minimal cases recorded in recent times.
Members of Association of Professional Plumbers of Nigeria, State and National Executives of BCPG, attended the workshop, which also featured discussion/demonstration and exhibition of plumbing products.

In a presentation on; ”The effects of poor quality of plumbing on structural members of a building”, Eddy Atumonyogo, an engineer told the participants that good quality pipes that can withstand design pressures should be used in structures and so all pipes to be encased in concrete must be pressure tested before concrete placing.

“Ensure that the structural engineer has made provision for the spaces to be occupied by pipes. Minimize embedding of pipes in structural elements as they get damaged with age. Insist that architects allow for ducts, in their design, for plumbing pipes for easy access and maintenance without damage to structures. The engineers and authorities should further scrutinize processes of building plan approvals, inspection of construction works, and quality control procedures regarding plumbing aspects. a stich in time, saves nine and prevention is better than cure”.

In this article:
Akinola GeorgeBCPG


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