Ugo Aliogo

As part of efforts to address the challenges of building collapse, quackery and other unethical practices facing the building industry, the Nigeria Institute of Builders (NIOB) has entered a partnership agreement with Lafarge Africa Plc.
Speaking at the building community dialogue series with theme; ‘Transforming the Nigeria Building and Construction Industry’ organised by Lafarge in Lagos recently, the Lagos State NIOB President, Adenike Said, noted that there is a missing link in the interaction between the professionals and the other stakeholders.

According to her, Lafarge has many innovations which is not known to everybody, saying that with this partnership, the ideas of the company would be brought to the knowledge and awareness of the end users in order to stem the issues of building collapse.
She lamented that the public has undermined the place of professionals in building and prefers carrying the construction through personal efforts or using quacks, noting that in the end they don’t get value for their money.

Said: “With this collaboration, we believe we can build a formidable team to have a better construction industry and people will get value for their money. Presently, we have quacks all over the place and a company such as Lafarge cannot be dealing with these quacks directly, but if they deal with professionals, they would be able to address and tell them the way to go.”

In his remarks, the Marketing Director, Lafarge Africa Plc, Vipul Agrawal, said the focus of the company is to contribute to the growth of the building sector in Nigeria. He explained that the company is committed to assisting individuals build good houses as they might encounter difficulties in accessing finance, technical advice, the right artisans to build, saying Lafarge would leverage its knowledge and commitment to work with individuals in those areas.

“We need to apply the right information and materials when building. We are bringing this into reality and Nigerians can work with us to achieve their building dreams. Builders need to use the right materials which are up to standards when building, if you are using the wrong construction practices it will not work,” Agrawal said.

“Therefore we have to channel a new way that is the purpose of this interaction. People are not willing to adapt to new technologies to improve. This is the time to change the perception of our workers. We have started working on the artisans, we are in partnership with National Board for Technical Education (NBTE) in ensuring that we train these artisans, therefore we have started the master training programme.”