NIQS unfolds innovations, urges reforms in construction industry
In a move to embrace modern procurement systems, procedures and processes in the construction industry, quantity surveyors have introduced new innovations to its practice.Apparently to increase the number of registered young members, the Nigerian Institute of Quantity Surveyors (NIQS) has now opened its profession to all graduates and created divisions such as building, civil engineering, mechanical and electrical engineering, infrastructure management and project management.
The institute is also clamouring for the establishment of the Construction Industry Development Board (CIDB), through a partnership between government and the industry professionals. The aim will be to create roadmaps, growth and development strategy for the sector.NIQS President, Obafemi Onashile, who bemoaned the present state of the construction industry, stated that it was critical to industry professionals. He also called for urgent formation of the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) or Construction Industry Training Council (CITC). A body of government and industry collaboration to actively promote and manage technical / vocational training of skills for the industry, which will involve subsidized or attractively sponsored training programmes.
Onashile, who spoke ahead of its yearly meeting holding this week, themed ‘Quality Management of Quantity Surveying Duties’, said professional bodies are already coming together, using the platform to approach government to find road maps and success in the industry in order to grow the economy.
According to him, “there must be a strategy to push that to help the economy. We are asking government to collaborate with us to move the sector forward. As of now, we are now exporting quantity surveyors, our products are such in a high demand all over the world.
“However, we want it to be an industry affair, so that our consultant services, contractors, others can operate outside the country. When we export surveyors, we generate foreign exchange to the economy.“Beyond NIQS, we are talking of all professions, we want to meet with the government and fine-tune a growth plan for this sector. It is high time, we took our future into our hands.”
Among other reforms the industry needed for improved productivity, the NIQS boss, sought for greater promotion of health and safety to make construction morally attractive.He said if greater attention is paid to health and safety in the industry, the issue of building collapse, caused by building inefficiencies would be adequately addressed.
Upon this, Onashile disclosed that the industry is clamouring for the enactment of health and safety laws to regulate how constructions will be carried out.He pointed out that if the bill is enacted and made as a regulation, it would remove building collapse.
“The bill stipulates obligation of developers to ensure that they get competent designers. It says the designer must be competent and also has an obligation to brief his employers on health and safety of site.
“Employer must also engage a consultant specifically for health and safety that would review the design and ensure the design must be built in safe manner. There must also be health and safety designers contributing to the design, as well as health and safety manager to make available records of the processes.“This will ensure quality hands in construction, including quality control for materials. For now, only few people are practicing it. But for our institution, because on the need for reforms, we are already starting it in our profession,” he said.
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