Ndoma Nyambi is the chairman of Cross River State branch of Nigerian Association of Technologists in Engineering (NATE). In this interview, he said indigenous engineers have what it takes to be ahead of most expatriates working in Nigeria.
What are the contributions of technologists in engineering to the society?
Repositioning engineering: to translate designs, theories, and dreams into realities and provide aggressive but sustainable maintenance of inputs to acceptable standards in terms of safety, durability and marketability and thereby ensure that outputs are society driven.
Do your colleagues with HND still suffer discrimination at their work places?
Some states are still suffering discrimination. Few states have removed the dichotomy. Other states have partially removed the dichotomy. Kebbi State is only state that has fully removed the discrimination.
Your colleagues are sometimes blamed for lack of quality outputs. What is your take on this?
Our colleagues who are registered with COREN output are not lacking. Our NATE colleagues are duty bound to give optimum quality or have their membership withdrawn if found wanting. So far no adverse report on our colleagues.
Are your members engaged by the Cross River State government in respect of the Bakassi deep sea port, superhighway and many other projects in the state?
Most of our members are involved at government level. Most of the works are done by consultants and contractors and supervised by state government Technologists in Engineering. We are practical oriented in terms of work efficiency.
Who should be blamed for incessant collapse of buildings?
The collapse of buildings can be blamed on all the stakeholders from owner to designers, builders, geologists, contractors, supervisors, engineers. But the question is at what point the error crept in. Somebody must be responsible for the collapse. Some building owners love cutting corners. Some engage craftsmen and artisans in the name of engineers. Some are in a hurry to complete projects. Some don’t follow specifications. A whole lot of reasons to make a book on this collapse of buildings.
Do Nigerian engineers have what it takes to replace expatriates?
All variables remaining constant Nigerian Engineers can beat expatriates. Most expatriates employ Nigerian engineers to do their work. The only difference is poor management of resources and inadequate utilization of modern equipment and testing tools in service delivery.
We understand COREN intends to register even foreign engineers. What does it portend?
Yes. It’s a step in the right direction. It will check quackery. Most expatriates are purely technicians but we erroneously call them engineers or technologists. There is need for COREN to recognise them and ascertain their competence or their claims and ensure they employ a percentage of Nigerian Engineers, and of course contribute to the growth of engineering technology of Nigeria.