AN OPEN LETTER TO THE NIGERIAN SOCIETY OF ENGINEERS (NSE), ITS SUB-DIVISIONS, BRANCHES AND CHAPTERS IN NIGERIA

By Kabiru el-Hussain Rumah,

My esteem and warmest regards, are to all the bonafide Executives, Fellows and Members of the Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE), its Divisions, Branches and Chapters, in Nigeria!

While accepting my fraternal greetings and best professional wishes, let me ask this innocent question, on who really notice the worrisome proliferations of the following foreign engineering societies, institutes and associations in Nigeria:

1. American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), with National Secretariat and Branches nationwide, in Nigeria!

2. American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), with National Secretariat and Branches nationwide, in Nigeria!

3. International Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IIEEE), with National Secretariat and Branches nationwide, in Nigeria!

4. American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE), with National Secretariat and Branches nationwide, in Nigeria!

5. American Society of Chemical Engineers (ASChemE), with National Secretariat and Branches nationwide, in Nigeria!

And other American and British engineering societies, institutes and associations, in Nigeria in such engineering fields, as structural engineering, metallurgical and material engineering etc!

Anytime I see an invitation to the inauguration of any of the above foreign engineering societies, institutes and associations, in Nigeria, it professionally pains me and left me wandering, on the professional fact that, if we are busy proliferating the above foreign engineering societies, institutes and associations, in Nigeria, what then will professionally become of our own great Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE) and its Nigerian Sub-Divisions, for all professional fields of Engineering in Nigeria, as well as their Branches and Chapters, in Nigeria respectively?

Specifically, I ask myself this question: must we have American and British Divisions of all the foreign engineering societies, institutes and associations, before we individually and collectively derive and enjoy the professional membership benefits of those foreign engineering societies, institutes and associations, my Fellow Engineers?

I personally once engaged the former Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE), on this ugly professional trends and phenomenon, and I am also using this opportunity, to echoe the same, to my Fellow Engineers, in general and the Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE), its Divisions, Branches and Chapters, in particular, to as a matter of utmost professional urgency learn to stop this uncalled, unpatriotic and unwarranted proliferations of the branches and divisions of these foreign engineering societies, institutes and associations; the professional truth of the matter is, if we continue to professionally patronize and promote these foreign engineering societies, institutes and associations, who then, will continue to patronize and promote our own engineering societies, institutes and associations, in Nigeria? Other foreigners, my Fellow Engineers?

I personally called on the Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE), at one hand and all the Engineering Divisions, Branches and Chapters of the NSE, at another hand, to try as much as they can, to stop this ugly engineering trends and phenomenon, if not for anything, at least, because of the inferiority complex of an average Nigerian in Nigeria, and if care is not taken, we will one day wake up with no one to register, for NSE and its Divisions, Branches and Chapters, simply because ASME, ASCE, IIEEE, ASSE, etc have competitively snatched all from us – an average Nigerian have a panacea for anything foreign; thank God I am not one of them!

One way, if I may suggest NSE, its Divisions, Branches and Chapters can stop this unpatriotic, uncalled and unwarranted professional trends and phenomenon, is for NSE, and its Divisions, Branches and Chapters, to enter into professional affiliations, collaborations and partnerships, with those foreign engineering societies, institutes and associations, so that, the interested Nigerian Engineers can harness such engineering benefits and gains, through the NSE and its Divisions, Branches and Chapters, without necessarily being a direct members of such foreign engineering societies, institutes and associations, let alone proliferating their unpatriotic, uncalled and unwarranted divisions, in Nigeria – are all these foreign engineering membership, not all about benefits that we perceived are there, but not here in Nigeria, my Fellow Engineers?

While I must painstakingly agree on the fact that, we cannot favourably compete with those foreign engineering societies, institutes and associations, because they are not our professional contemporaries, we can only develop and promote our own NSE, its Divisions, Branches and Chapters, when all our professional hands are on their various desks; but, what of if some of our professional hands are on the desks of those foreign engineering societies, institutes and associations, and not in the professional desks of Nigerian societies, institutes and associations, my fellow Engineers? I know many Engineers, in Nigeria that are neither Members of NSE nor any of its Divisions, Branches and Chapters, but are bonafide and financial members of these foreign engineering societies and associations and their unfortunate reason is simple: the benefits of membership of those foreign engineering societies, institutes and associations are never comparable, to what is professionally obtainable, in all our national engineering societies, branches, divisions and chapters – imagine the capital flight from Nigeria, to those foreign engineering societies, institutes and associations, in the name of membership registration fees and annual dues per annum – let NSE and its Divisions, Branches and Chapters come up with some professional initiatives, with view to have a win-win situation, with these unpatriotic fellow Engineers – let the NSE and its Divisions, Branches and Chapters retain them with them, while such Members continue to enjoy such professional benefits, albeit, through NSE or its Divisions, Branches and Chapters!

American and British engineering societies, institutes and associations are fully developed, simply because the Americans and Brittons developed them; if that is the professional case, why not join our hands to develop what is ours and stop promoting what is not ours, even though we can partner and benchmark with them?

Let me cite an example of the professional dilemma, such proliferation of foreign engineering societies, institutes and associations, pose to us as professional engineers, in Kaduna State, as an example and with view to take home my points:

In Kaduna the NSE Branch where I am currently, we have NSE Kaduna Branch, as a Branch of NSE and requiring our active membership participations, in the form of attending monthly meetings, industrial visits, and other Branch professional and welfare engagements and activities, payment of Branch dues and other voluntary donations etc, not only that, we also have Nigerian Institute of Civil Engineers (NICE), Kaduna Chapter, a Sub-Division of NSE and a Chapter of NSE Kaduna Branch, which also require the same professional attentions, as the NSE Kaduna Branch, now American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Kaduna Branch had just being proliferated and established and of course require the same professional attention, from the same members, as the NSE Kaduna Branch and NICE Kaduna Chapter respectively and in a city like Kaduna and with less than 100 professionally active Civil Engineers; how many do they want Kaduna Civil Engineers to divide, so that, they can participate effectively, efficiently and economically, in all the above three professional associations, especially looking at the fact that, donor fatigue is real?

While there may be professional justification for NSE Kaduna Branch and NICE Kaduna Chapter respectively, I personally see no professional justification, for neither ASCE National nor ASCE Kaduna Branch and for Nigeria and Kaduna State respectively – note that, I am only voicing out a professional concern and not in any way to professionally undermine neither anyone nor any engineering division or chapter!

Conclusively; let NSE its Branches, Divisions and Chapters try as much as they can to stop the uncalled, unpatriotic and unwarranted proliferations of foreign engineering societies, institutes and associations, in Nigeria, even if, through politico-legislative advocacy and activism, in Nigeria, so that, this ugly trends and phenomenon can be reversed for the better, in Nigeria – indeed, there is no limit to what can be achieved politically!

As a matter of advise, let the professional aspirants, in the forthcoming NSE Election, politically champion the abolition and the reversal of the ugly trends of the uncalled, unpatriotic and unwarranted foreign proliferations of the engineering societies, institutes and associations in Nigeria, we will surely mobilize votes for them and only them!

Long Live COREN!

Long Live NSE!

Long Live NIMechE !

Long Live NSE Katsina and Kaduna Branches respectively!

Long Live NIMechE Katsina and Kaduna Branches respectively!

*Engr. Kabiru el-Hussain Rumah, MNSE, MNIMechE, Jakadan Rumah is the former Assistant Technical Secretary of both the NSE Kaduna Branch and NIMechE Kaduna Chapter, in Kaduna State respectively!*

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