Ex-SSG calls on architects to protect the integrity of their profession
Posted by Pamela Eboh, Awka | 25 October 2016 | 2,194 times
The immediate past Secretary to the State Government (SSG) in Anambra State, Mr. Oseloka Obaze, has challenged Nigerian architects to protect the integrity of their profession by imbibing the ‘do it well attitude’, be proactive in the development of national infrastructure and to be bold to condemn any structure that is built below standard no matter who owns it.
He made the statement on Saturday in Awka at a two-day conference organised by the Anambra State Chapter of the Nigerian Institute of Architects (NIA) in collaboration with the Anambra Capital Territory Development Authority (ACTDA) adding that though government has a role to play in regulating and preserving national property, individuals and professionals also have a vital role to play.
Obaze regretted the situation were some structures are done below quality under the watchful eyes of the professionals while those indicted for collapsed buildings in Anambra State in 2014, were yet to be sanctioned.
The former SSG who is also the MD/CEO of Selonnes Consult Ltd. in an hour long presentation on the topic, ‘Infrastructural Development, A Panacea For Economic and Social Well Being’ said that regardless of the tall dreams by governments in power to transform the nation to a Dubai of Africa, “such dream can never be realized if we continue to have leaders who lack vision and commitment.”
In his words, “If we have leaders who lack vision and commitment, we remain at risk of underperforming and underdevelopment.
“We cannot therefore speak of infrastructural development without first grasping sectoral priorities and sectoral niches affordability and areas where we must strive for comparative advantage. We must of necessity determine what our focus sectors are, those being areas where we can exact ‘high impact value’. ”
He stressed that the nation must also seek the requisite synergy between the government and the organised private sector as well as the private entrepreneurs with the sole aim of collaborating purposefully while sharing the responsibility for building our national infrastructure.
Continuing, Obaze noted that it is fallacious to think or expect government alone to build the national infrastructure saying that the role of the government is to regulate and partner with people in operating the Nigerian economy and creating the enabling framework and an enabling environment.
He stated: “Yes, government retains the core responsibility and must tackle the chunk of the infrastructure required for national development, down to the municipality and local government level.
“Consortiums and private investors also do have a vital role to play. This is to say that there exist and will always be cross cutting niche sectors where government, consortiums and individuals can partner, under the rubric of Public Private Partnership (PPP).”
In his keynote address, the Managing Director of ACTDA, Arc. Michael Okonkwo, urged Architects to play their role in tackling some of the unique challenges facing the profession and also harness every opportunity for architecture and development in today’s changing world.
He applauded the recent policy move by the state government that ceded the development control of Awka capital territory to the care of ACTDA saying that it is the right thing to do.
Okonkwo said: “ACTDA is a corporate body situated in the Governor’s office saddled with the planning, implementation of plans and the developmental control of the state capital based on the special vision of the Executive Governor for the specified areas within the boundaries of the state capital.”
Photo by Pamela Eboh shows Obaze speaking during the forum.