FG’s Patronage of Nigerian Architects Good for Devt, Says ARCON

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Fadekemi Ajakaiye

The Architects Registration Council of Nigeria (ARCON) has called on the federal government to engage the services of registered Nigerian architects, as they possess the skills to deliver quality services for the nation’s development.

President of ARCON, Sir Oladipupo Ajayi, said the desire of some government officials to employ their foreign counterparts over Nigerian Architects, was not healthy for the development of the profession, the construction industry and the economy.

Ajayi made this appeal last week during the council’s first virtual induction ceremony, which led to the licensing of newly registered architects and architectural firms.

The ARCON president also urged Nigerian architects to think outside the box and create wealth, as times were changing, adding that there were many emerging opportunities within the profession.

He said gone were the days when they would go the conventional way, stating that Nigerian architects should be innovative and creative to deliver designs that met the need of the moment.

He said architects, who are leaders in the construction family, should evolve new ways of doing things, embrace technology in their day-to-day life and create wealth.

According to Ajayi, “Notwithstanding the biting effects of coronavirus, architects have greater opportunities to prove our leadership role by embracing innovating designs that both meet the need of your client and such that can be sustainable in the nearest future.”

He charged Nigerian architects to explore urbanism, stating that many Nigerian cities cry for regeneration. “The Council would like to draw your attention to urbanism, which has been scholarly defined as the study of low population of urban areas such as towns and cities and its interaction with the built environment.

“The Nigerian architect has been trained to handle this kind of schemes. The benefits of Urbanism are multifarious but suffice it to say that it enhances the quality of life, make available better places to live, work and play in, higher and more stable property values”, he revealed.”

Ajayi said: “We therefore call on the Nigerian Government to partner with the Council for urbanism to be achieved in Nigeria and urban regeneration, which is principally to aid existing cities to be remodeled to pave way for the creation of more roads, motorways and transport systems, as well as creating new residential areas, industrial sites and commercial areas.”

To the inductees, Ajayi said: “As you take your pledge, I would want you to start thinking of how you would make the investor release his wallet to you through your designs.

“You must think smart just like the smart homes technology which is also known as home automation which provides home owners security, comfort, convenience and energy efficiency by allowing them to control smart devices often by a smart home app on their smart phone or other networked devices.”

Speaking on the need for all registered architects to promote the use of ARCON Project Registration Number (APRN), the Registrar of the Council, Arc. Umar Murnai said it was part of the regulator’s initiative to improve standard of projects and to make architects involved in any construction project take responsibility for his or her contract.

According to him, APRN is a unique composite-encoding of the architect’s registration number, the plot number, the project location, the application date and a unique serial number, followed by a special suffix (if required) for special sectors such as educational institutions and housing corporations.

For quality control measure, Murnai said an APRN certificate would be issued to the architect for transmission to the client, saying the certification binds the architect to standard of professional practice.

The immediate past president of the council, Arc. Umar Aliu urged both newly inducted and old architects and architectural firms to adhere strictly to the conditions of engagement.

He warned architects against sidelining their lawful conditions of engagement, which, he noted would be tantamount to misconduct.