By Mashe Umaru Gwamna
Minister for Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, said Engineering Practitioners’ roles is necessary to overcome infrastructural challenges in the country.
Fashola made the disclosure at the 29th engineering assembly organized by the council for engineering regulation of engineering in Nigeria( COREN), recently in Abuja.
“Infrastructural challenges cannot be overcome without the active participation of engineering practitioners in the country”.
He stated that government had put in so many policies to ensure that the engineering practitioners take their rightful place towards strategic development of Nigeria.
The minister represented by minister for state Works and Housing, Abubakar Aliyu, said,the theme for this year’s”Advancing the Frontiers of Engineering Practitioners and Entrenching Professional for National Development”,is very timely and apt as this administration views infrastructural development as key bedrock of rapid social and economic advancement of Nigeria.
He explained that advancing Frontiers and Entrenching Professionalism in any profession, the engineer stand out as any deviation from absolute compliance to professional ethnics or misconduct affects safety and security of lives .
“ this calls for all engineering practitioners to adopt international best practices in the provision of infrastructure development maintenance and management.
“ COREN as the regulatory body has a critical roles to play in this regards.”, he stated.
He reiterated that achieving the goals of this theme comes by continuous training in line with COREN’s newly adopted outcome
-based education (OBE) and continuing professional development(CPD).
“As a means through which all engineering practitioners and firms will obtain their licenses for effective performance”,Fashola said .
Earlier, in his welcome address COREN President, Engr. Ali Rabiu, revealed that 80 per cent of artisans found on construction sites across the country are foreigners.
“According to experts, more than 80 per cent of masons, carpenters, steel fabricators, plumbers, electricians, painters and tilers found on construction sites across the country are foreigners from neighbouring countries of Cameroun, Niger, Togo and Ghana. Some firms go as far as China to employ engineering technicians and craftsmen”.
Engr.Rabiu reveals that, the development had led to Nigeria losing over N900 billion to foreign engineering technicians and craftsmen as the local built environment fails to generate the required manpower.
“It was estimated that the country loses over N900 billion to foreign engineering technicians and craftsmen as the local built environment fails to generate the required manpower”.
“The skills gap has continued to increase over the years due to the retirement of aged Engineering Technicians and Craftsmen without the young generation being sufficiently groomed to take over from them.
“The situation is compounded by the absence of a well-structured TVET (Technical and Vocational Education and Training) and apprenticeship system for workmen in technical colleges”,Engr. Rabiu said.