The Architects Registration Council of Nigeria (ARCON), has called for arrest and prosecution of those who are directly involved in the recent building collapse in Jabi Abuja, which killed several people, while others sustained degrees of injuries.
ARCON president, Arc (Sir) Dipo Ajayi, who made the call in a statement yesterday, observed that the incident clearly shows that developers and various institutions, hire unregistered persons posing to be architects/consultants and foreigners to carry out projects in Nigeria thereby subjecting the unsuspecting public to great risk of loss of life and property.
Ajayi stated that in order to mitigate such an incident, the council has set up the ARCON Projects Registration Number (APRN) system, which is a mandatory registration number to be issued to all architects practising in Nigeria, for each of their projects, to certify that these projects are designed, handled and executed by Nigerian citizens fully registered to practice in Nigeria.
He explained that APRN was intended to combat the scourge of building failure and collapse through the elimination of quackery, adding that it would also ensure that only fully registered and financially current architects/architectural firms prepare, produce and submit designs for planning/implementation approval and receive such approvals when they are given.
The ARCON president also stated that architects and architectural firms who are registered with the council are to submit architectural building plans for approval/implementation and are responsible for the supervision of their designs. Ajayi disclosed that the council would soon set up an enforcement and compliance unit, to ensure that only registered architects handle architectural projects in the Federal Republic of Nigeria in consonance with the extant laws.
The measures, according to him, are meant to complement the content and spirit of the National Building Codes, which stipulates that only professionals with the requisite knowledge and expertise of the building process are engaged to carry out building projects.
He added that the council is equally working in concert with other interest groups to get the built environment properly policed to avoid or reduce to the barest minimum the issue of building collapse and its attendant effect on the developer and the national psyche. LN