Braide becomes NIA president, pledges improved practice

By Tunde Alao   |   30 November 2015   |   3:12 am  

Every architect had to ensure that they invited qualified workers so that in the event of a building collapsed; it was the architect that would first be arrested. But in a situation where impostors are claiming to be a developer and designs whatever he/she want and build without qualified professionals, we cannot get less than what we are getting now.

AFTER serving his professional body, the Nigerian Institute of Architects (NIA), Mr. Waheed Brimmo, has moved on, handing over to a newly elected president, Mr. Tonye Oliver Braide.

Braide, who became the 26th NIA president, took over last week in Abuja from his predecessor, Brimmo. The new helmsman along with other executive members would steer the activities of the institute for another two years.

The president, whose investiture came at the close of the NIA Annual General Assembly and Conference in Abuja, promised of building upon the achievements his predecessor.

In his acceptance speech, the new president promised to tackle challenges facing the institute, especially, as regards capacity development of young architects and training of student architects in higher institutions, which he said would ultimately boost the practice of architecture in Nigeria.

Braide said his administration would look at accreditation in any institutions offering architecture to ensure that such institution is capable of training young ones. He added that he would establish graduate examination board and beef up schools with deficiencies.

“Apart from preparing our students for the future challenges and make them better practitioners in architectural endeavours, this administration will monitor to ensure total compliance with expatriates quota provision.

“Besides, NIA will create platform for registration of every house in Nigeria as this would help government drive its policies”, said Braide, pledging that his administration will support President Muhammadu Buhari’s led administration to build Nigeria of architects’ dream,”

Also speaking, the immediate past NIA President Waheed Niyi Brimmo said the election that brought new officials was very successful.

Left; Chief Femi Majekodunmi, immediate past president, NIA, Waheed Brimmo, newly elected President, Tonye Braide and Charles Majoroh (all Architects), at the just concluded 55th annual general meeting of the Institute in Abuja…recently

Left; Chief Femi Majekodunmi, immediate past president, NIA, Waheed Brimmo, newly elected President, Tonye Braide and Charles Majoroh (all Architects), at the just concluded 55th annual general meeting of the Institute in Abuja…recently

However, he said one area that needs the attention of stakeholders, especially, professionals in the built environment is incidences of collapsed building.

According to Brimmo, the ugly development is getting the necessary attention, not because of government policy but because of architects’ insistence on educating the public to ensure that every building should have an architect.

“So if a client wants a design, he must get an architect. Because in those climes where collapsed buildings was not pronounced, architects are always in charge, because developer, after surveying the land would meet the architect and entrust him to invite his own team in the profession, such as structural engineers, mechanical/electrical engineer, surveyor and others.

“Every architect has to ensure that they invited qualified workers so that in the event of a building collapsed, it is the architect that would first be arrested. But in a situation where impostors are claiming to be a developer and designs whatever he/she wants and build without qualified professionals, we cannot get less than what we are getting now”, he lamented.

Concerning government policies, he said because of political interference in the affairs of professional bodies generally – whether in private practice or government or education, interference of political elite has really affected professionals in the economy.

“But with the new government and its change mantra, we’re very hopeful that we’ll move forward. Policies are there but prosecution is the problem, but with political will in place, Nigeria will get better.

Another area the practitioners spoke against is the influx of foreign professionals, which they claimed goes back to the politicians mostly at the state level, noting that their engagement at the federal level is not much pronounced.

According to Brimmo, subsequent leadership of NIA, in conjunction with the past ones would strive to ensure that indigenous professionals hold sway in the development of Nigeria. “We are the one that can bring about a liveable cities in the country, not foreign ones.

“As an Institute, we have in the recent past considered the city and yet at this first conference under a new political dispensation its development is our concern and our theme. It is a truism that only the architect gives form and meaning to what has become the habitat of the increasingly high proportion of children, youth, grown and the aged. Proffering sustainable solutions to the city’s myriad challenges is, therefore, a call on Nigerian architects to duty.

“Hence the theme for this BGM: Development of the City: Past, Present and Future. No doubt reading through will among others make plain myriad of challenges and opportunities before the Nigerian Architect and the roles beckoning our Institute at local, national and international levels. It is apposite to salute all who sacrificed time and money to make the activities recorded happen.

“The report need not be seen as merely a record of the past but a fundamental template from which the future must be passionately, proactively and patiently fashioned. Where we have succeeded there is the assurance of greater successes and where we have failed a ladder to success already exists”, said Brimmo.

Present at the investiture night were Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Minister, Mohammed Bello represented by a director in FCT administration, Soso Mohammed, Chairman of the Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) Ekpo Nta, former governor of Akwa Ibom Victor Attah among others.



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