From: Laide Raheem, Abeokuta
Worried by the rise in building collapse incidents in the country, the Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) has charged sandcrete block moulders to adhere strictly to the production standard of building blocks as laid down by the Nigerian Industrial Standards (NIS).
Coordinator of Ogun State Office 1 of the SON, Engr. Samuel Ayuba, gave the charge on Thursday during a one day stakeholders forum and sensitisation workshop, organised for sandcrete block makers from Ogun West and Egba division of the State, held in Ota, Ogun State.
Ayuba, who noted that blocks make up 50% of building materials, said the workshop which was the first step at enlightening the block moulders in the standard requirement of block moulding, would also help them in making SON certified products.
“Whenever there is a building collapse, the next question people ask is where is SON? We are starting with sandcrete block moulders now, we will also move to the quality of irons being used, the quality of cement and other components, and at the end of the day, we are going to sanitise the whole system”. He stated.
Ayuba, however, urged the block moulders to make their products available for standard tests by SON by obtaining and filling the Mandatory Conformity Assessment Programme (MANCAP) certification form disclosing his organisation would convince the Ogun State government to only patronise local block makers who are standards certified.
He also disclosed that SON office in the state will set up a task force to go round and ensure block moulders make products that are NIS compliant.
Speaking on the topic, “Quality Sandcrete Blocks: A Basic Infrastructural Building Development, Chief Standard Engineer, Civil and Building section of SON, Engineer Adeoye Onipede, told the participants to always adhere to the approved standard in block making noting adhering to quality would not affect the profit margin of any producer.
“The standard is always 30 moulds from a bag of cement, but when you begin to mould 40 to 50 from a bag of cement, then something is wrong somewhere which we must guard against”.
“You should also be mindful of the quality of sand, water and cement to be used in your production. These three raw materials are very key and must be mixed in the right proportion. In accordance to NIS, the grade of cement should be 42.5. You must allow your blocks to dry for at least 24 hours and water sprayed for seven days before parking. You should also note that the standard stacking for your product is five coaches, and failure to adhere to standard may not augur well at the long run”. Onipede stated.
In his remark, the state chairman of the National Association of Block Moulders of Nigeria (NABMON) in Ogun state, Chief Olusanya Olusoji, who was represented by the chairman of Yewa-Awori division of the association, Elder Olowojesiku Israel, commended SON for the workshop saying NABMON members would always ensure standards in their production.