The Association for Consulting Engineering in Nigeria says it has commenced a campaign for a paradigm shift, policy review in engineering consulting.
ACEN made this call during the 2023 seminar and extra-ordinary general meeting of the association in Ibadan.
It attracted leaders in the engineering profession including some past presidents of the Council for the Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria, Nigerian Society of Engineers, ACEN and a host of other stakeholders.
The President of the association, and a fellow of the Nigerian Society of Engineers, Ajibade Oke, said the EGM was aiming for an integrated approach to secure the survival and strengthening of the engineering consulting profession, through advocacy and representation to relevant government bodies while promoting the country’s development.
In his keynote address at the EGM with the theme, ‘The trend in consulting engineering practice in Nigeria’, a past President and fellow of the Nigerian Society of Engineers, Alade Ajibola, said, “As major stakeholders in our Nation, we should stand firm on the principles guiding the industry and request all that is necessary to develop and sustain it.”
According to him, the commencement of a new political administration led by President Bola Tinubu provided an appropriate opportunity to press the importance of the consultancy industry as being critical to the realization of its objective of bridging the infrastructure deficit, employing graduates as well as the general turnaround of the national economy’’.
The Past President of ACEN and COREN and a Fellow of NSE, as well as Chairman of KOA Consultants Ltd, Ibikunle Ogunbayo, said, consulting engineers should not be begging for work as there was a need for their services, while lamenting the volatility of the economy and the complexity of the regulatory environment.
He called for the government to make the environment simpler and more enabling for professionals.
Ogunbayo called for full implementation of Executive Order 5 and the extension of the Nigerian Content Law to all engineering activities; the implementation of viable business and growth strategies; the involvement of engineers in the legislative processes in the National and State Assemblies in line with establishing a Liaison office for a lobby group to interface with policymakers.
He also emphasised the importance of integrity and ethical dealings by engineering institutions as well as buttressed the need for the collection of data which is to be made public through the Nigerian Bureau of Statistics and the sharing of information on engineering development amongst engineering institutions.
Also speaking, the Principal Partner, Sanni Ojo & Partners, Olusola Sanni, said, “The potential of consulting engineers could be unlocked through strengthening regulatory frameworks, investing in planning and project management, promoting research and innovation, and fostering continuous professional development.”
He called for collaborative approaches and community engagement for sustainable and inclusive infrastructure development.