BY: Eke Awa, Awka.
The Nigerian Institute of Architects (NIA), Anambra State chapter has faulted the recent inauguration of a panel of inquiry by the state government into cases of building collapse in Onitsha, the commercial city of the state.
The body noted that setting up of panels on building collapse without recourse to the white paper report published in 2014 would amount to exercise in futility.
Addressing newsmen in Awka on Wednesday, the Chairman of the body, Arc. Osita Okafor, asked Governor Willie Obiano to implement the report which he described as detailed and comprehensive.
He said the report stressed the need to establish a one-stop approval process, which according to him, was endorsed for approval by all relevant professionals in the building industry.
He said, “We wish to state that we are taken aback by the inauguration of the panel without implementation of recommendation of former panel set up by the same government on June 9, 2014.
“We therefore draw government’s attention to the implementation of the already published white paper report on building collapse published in October 13, 2014.
“As a state that prides itself as the light of the nation, Anambra should be able to show example of best world practices.”
Okafor further described as unconventional and unacceptable the exclusion of architects in the construction of several projects in the state, including the recent instituted panel of inquiry on building collapse.
He cited instances of the construction of the ongoing international conference center in the state capital as well as the preparation and signing of architects’ payment certificate by non architect in the ministry of housing.
“These anomalies don’t happen anywhere in the world. What results do they expect after excluding architects, the prime consultants in building projects from the panel dealing with serious matter as grievous as building collapse?” he queried.