The Nigerian Institute of Quantity Surveyors (NIQS) rounded off its 28th biennial conference and general meeting in Lagos weekend with the inauguration of Alhaji Mohammed Abba Tor as the 25th President of the construction cost profession.Alhaji Abba Tor succeeds Mr Obafemi Onashile who piloted the affairs of the Institute in the last two years. 

Speaking after his investiture, Abba Tor pledged to build upon the lofty legacies left behind by his predecessor. Other officers elected into the NIQS executive council include a former Lagos State Chairman of the Institute, Mr. Olayemi Shonubi who  is the President –elect (Deputy President), Mr Kene Nzekwe, Vice President and Aminu Bashir Mohammed, Secretary General Abba Tor who noted that the quantity surveying profession has undergone tremendous evolution in the last three decades due to globalisation, technological advancement and changing needs of employers in both the public and private sectors, explained that “it is imperative for the profession to continue adapting to the emerging challenges in order for us to remain relevant in today’s market place”.

He observed that despite all the efforts made towards promoting quantity surveying in Nigeria, “we still have a long way to go in projecting the functions and duties of a quantity surveyor beyond just producing bill of quantities, preparing valuation of works done and final accounts”. He promised to embark upon an aggressive marketing strategy to make the profession better known to all Nigerians.

“Marketing efforts shall be customized to target each segment of our market and stakeholders. Advocacy visits to government agencies, organised private establishments and media houses will be pursued with vigour. We will continue to reskill our competencies to offer total cost management and other ancillary services beginning from project initiation through planning, implementation, monitoring and closure,“ he said.

The new NIQS boss also promised to rebrand the Institute for sustainable growth and development, “It is necessary to revisit the entire brand architecture of the Institute. The whole gamut of the Institute’s brand will be reviewed and made a brand of choice when it comes to costing and cost management of construction projects,” he said.

Continuing, Alhaji Abba Tor said: “The objective of the marketing effort is to stimulate demand as well as deepen and expand sales opportunities. We will continuously retrain our members to guarantee total customer satisfaction to our clients”.

The NIQS president promised to collaborate with international sister organizations in the areas of capacity building, knowledge sharing and technological transfer. Similarly, Abba For pledged to collaborate with other built environment professions to develop the nation’s construction industry.

Chairman of the occasion, Alhaji Mohammed Hayatu-Deen who noted the huge infrastructural deficit in the country called on quantity surveyors to ensure that scarce resources available to bridge the gap are carefully and efficiently managed.

•Ijeoma Nwachukwu