In a bid to guard against building collapse in the country, the Federal Government has called for increased professionalism and sanctions against anyone, who contravenes building laws.
The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, made the call when he featured on the News Agency of Nigeria Forum in Abuja.
“As far as building collapse is concerned, the point that I would like to make is that the answer to stopping building collapse is increased professionalism on one hand and sanctions on the other hand.
“But there must be a rigorous consciousness to ensure that any builder, any professional that is employed in the process, will not only lose his practice, if he is found to have acted improperly, he should be tried and if found guilty must also be punished.
“There must be consequences for this kind of lapses because if buildings that are 500 years old are standing in some other countries, why should 10-year-old buildings under construction be collapsing in our environment?’’
Fashola stated that people need to understand that building a house is a very serious project, which if not done properly, can have devastating consequences.
“Buildings have architectural drawings; the architectural drawing also comes with structural a drawing that determines the safety of the architectural super-structure on the structural sub-structure.
“So, this must be done properly and this is a science that if done properly, the results are predictable; the building will stay up if properly designed and built according to design.
He said that building control development and building permit approvals should not be handled by one institution but should be separated to ensure diligent enforcement of laws and supervision.
He recalled that in his time as Lagos State governor, a building control agency was established with the idea of separating the building permit approval from building control.
“So, that the person who approves the building plan is not the one who inspects what you do.’’
The minister said the separation was necessary in order to enforce laws and inspect the building site properly.
Fashola also advised that the idea of central building permit for the whole nation could not bring efficiency.
He said that it must be done at the state level, even in consultation with the local level because many more of the buildings were constructed at the local government level. (NAN)