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Building Collapses: Ebonyi State Joins Force with COREN and NSE to address menaces

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Cordelia Agbo writes on recent efforts by Council for the Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria, COREN, Nigerian Society of Engineers, NSE, and Ebonyi State Ministry of Capital City Development, toward addressing spate of Building Collapses in the State.

In a determined bid to tackle the rampant occurrences of building stress and collapses in Ebonyi State, the Council for the Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria, COREN and the Nigerian Society of Engineers, Ebonyi State Chapter, orchestrated a pivotal visit led by their Chairman, Engr. Enyinnaya Eni, to the office of the Honourable Commissioner of the Ministry of Capital City Development, Hon. Sunday Inyima, situated along Ezza Road. This strategic meeting marks a significant stride towards a safer and more secure building environment within the state.

Speaking with great conviction during the visit, Engr. Enyinnaya Eni underscored the critical importance of addressing the root causes of building stress and collapses in the region. He attributed many of these tragic incidents to the unchecked construction of sites without proper government approval, in conjunction with poor design and haphazard erection of buildings. It is the union’s stance that such negligence has perpetuated the grievous loss of lives and assets across the state.

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Engr. Enyinnaya emphasized the pressing need for widespread sensitization of developers, along with a rigorous oversight mechanism that effectively curbs the infiltration of unqualified practitioners in the construction industry. Advocating for a robust partnership between the Council for the Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria, COREN and the Nigerian Society of Engineers, Ebonyi State Chapter, and the Ministry of Capital City Development, he outlined the collaborative efforts required to execute thorough inspections and evaluations of building sites.

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Central to the conversation was the insistence on obtaining government approval for all building plans. Engr. Enyinnaya articulated that this crucial measure would be complemented by the presence of a resident engineer during the entire construction process. Highlighting the significance of this step, he asserted that it would significantly diminish the risk of substandard practices and contribute to safer structures across the state.

In a nod to transparency and accountability, Engr. Enyinnaya advocated for an enhanced follow-up mechanism to ensure that the approved designs translate accurately into the implemented structures. This alignment, he posited, would eliminate the discrepancies often witnessed between intended plans and actual outcomes.

Hon. Sunday Inyima, in his response, expressed his willingness to join forces with the regulatory engineers and engineering society to mitigate the persistent menace of building stress and collapses in Ebonyi State. Recognizing the gravity of the situation, he reaffirmed the commitment of the Ministry of Capital City Development to collaborate effectively in this endeavour.

Adding a layer of expertise to the discourse, Engr. Prof. Charles Ezugwu, a representative of the Council for the Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria, (COREN) highlighted the vital role that the state government could play in eradicating quackery from the engineering field within Ebonyi State. His insight further underscored the urgency of unifying efforts to uphold professional standards and ethics.

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Echoing the sentiments, Mrs. Nwite Esther, Head of Department of Town Planning, and Builder Ugbo Obasi, both from the Ministry of Capital City Development, voiced their concerns over the scarcity of manpower within their departments. They earnestly appealed to all stakeholders within the construction field to actively support efforts to curtail the proliferation of unqualified individuals posing as professionals. Furthermore, they implored all qualified engineers to acquire the necessary licenses to operate, thereby fostering an environment of competence and adherence to guidelines.

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In this collaborative pursuit, the Council for the Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria, (COREN) and the Nigerian Society of Engineers, Ebonyi State Chapter, along with the Ministry of Capital City Development, are forging a new path towards a safer, more secure built environment. Their united stance against quackery, negligence, and substandard practices heralds a promising era for construction within Ebonyi State, signifying a resolute commitment to preserving lives and properties.

Cordelia Agbo- PRO Ministry of Capital City Development

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