The Minister of Power Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola has challenged the Council of Registered Builders of Nigeria (CORBON) to end incessant building collapse in the country. Fashola said during the council’s 15th induction ceremony, held in Abuja that the situation had reached an embarrassing proportion, thus needed a complete overhaul.

He stated that since the Council was vested with the mandate to determine what standard of knowledge and skills necessary to practice, CORBON should be responsible to regulate and control the practice of the building profession. Fashola said: “There is no doubt that the Nigerian construction industry has grown in size and complexity, and indeed recorded giant strides in national development. However, it is sad to note that cases of shoddy works and defective buildings still traverse the landscape, and this has become a plague agitating the minds of Nigerians.

“In worst case scenarios, these have led to the collapse of buildings, loss of lives and investments. It must. Be admitted that building collapse is not limited to Nigeria alone or the developing economies, but the scope and frequency of the menace is our country has reached quite embarrassing proportions.”

However, he challenged the council to develop for implementation, effective strategies and framework including benchmarks to ensure the project quality management plan of building in the country is rightly applied.

In his remark, the Chairman of CORBON, Bala Kabir admitted that the built industry had over the years bedevilled with challenges of poor quality delivery and incessant building collapses. He said this had resulted to loss of lives, properties with huge economic losses.

However, Kabir restated mandate of the council to include the establishment and implementation of academic building standards as well as practice. He added that CORBON is charged to regulate the activities of builders through registration and issuing of licenses. “We accredit educational institutions, programs for training of builders and discipline registered and license holders,” he said.

The Guest Speaker, Akin Akindoyeni urged the National Assembly to strengthen the council through legislative frameworks to end quackery and building collapse in the country. Akindoyeni noted that except CORBON is empowered, it may be difficult to stop the menace.

According to him, prospective house owners should as well endeavour to engage experts in the sector before commencing any building ‎project. “Nigerians too are not helping matters. Some people give housing projects to quacks and buy substandard materials. So if any ‎collapse happen, the blame goes to the builders,” he added. – The Nation