Construction industries upscale artisans’ skills

By Terkula Igidi

Federation of Construction Industries (FOCI), an umbrella body for construction and engineering companies in Nigeria, has embraced novel and technologically advanced models for upscaling artisans’ skills.

The construction sector has been beset with poor requisite skills and competencies by artisans to execute jobs in the sector.

But FOCI, as part of efforts to bridge the gap, has established a skills academy in Abuja and has been partnering stakeholders to train artisans in latest skills so as to acquire the competencies to take up jobs in the sector.

President of FOCI, Engr Nasiru Dantata, while addressing participants at the UNESCO Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) for the construction industry training which was organised in partnership with FOCI Skills Academy and Bridging Innovation and Learning in TVET (BILT), said artisans were key players in the construction industry.

“FOCI is a voluntary organisation which cares about how we work, and we also care about our employees.

“The biggest thing that happened in the industry in the last five years is COVID-19, though the construction industry has bounced back and we are fully busy with the support of the state and the federal government as well as the private sector that are engaging us. So, many of our members are back to work.

“Today, what we are discussing is the cooperation that FOCI is continuing to put up with very strong credible international organisations worldwide to support our efforts in training qualified Nigerians that we can work with throughout our industry.”

He added that the partnership with BILT was to deploy the best models for training artisans that are employable anywhere in the world.

The Director General of FOCI Skills Academy, Olubunmi Adekole, on her part, said the academy is one of the institutions chosen by UNESCO to benefit from the programme.

She said: “So the purpose of this programme is whenever there is an innovation in a workplace, we quickly transform that innovation into training so that people can come and be trained in that innovation and therefore can acquire skills that make them work-ready anywhere in the world.

“So what we are doing is that we are training the artisans that are work-ready and we are partnering with UNESCO to learn better ways of doing that.” (Daily Trust)

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