Nigeria’s Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo has urged professional bodies to take active roles in effective governance of the country through the implementation of government plans and policies.
Osinbajo stated this when he received members of the Nigerian Institute of Architects, NIA, led by its President, Mr. Enyi Ben-Eboh, on a courtesy visit to the Presidential Villa on Monday.
The Vice President, who made specific reference to the social housing scheme of the Nigerian government said the programme would significantly impact more Nigerians if professional bodies such as the NIA play an active role.
He said; “When we developed the Economic Sustainability Plan (ESP), it was part of our response to the Covid-19 pandemic. We were very concerned about social housing, not just as a way of providing cheap housing for the poorest among us, but also as a way of providing jobs and job opportunities. But I am not so sure we got much response from NIA.
“One of the advantages of professional bodies like yours is to make it possible for a vast majority of our people to get decent housing for instance, finding the cheapest ways of building 300,000 affordable houses.
“For the vast majority of Nigerians, the relevance of our professional institutions, especially when it comes to the design and building, must be felt when it comes to the basics. I certainly will like to see what sorts of contributions the NIA will make in developing policies around social housing.”
Osinbajo commended the Institute for coming up with the Integrated Infrastructure Research for Development Conference as its contribution to the country’s National Development Plan, saying ”situating architecture in the creative industry is apt.”
Emphasising the need for the building sector to drive the industry and its operations as much as possible, the Vice President stated that “it is very important that the sector itself drives reforms, regulation and policy.”
Soliciting support of the VP for the body, the leader of the delegation and President of the NIA, Ben-Eboh commended the Nigerian government for its contribution to the growth of professionals by the signing of Executive Order 02 in 2017.
He said; “without doubt, Executive Order 2 laid the foundation for the gradual take-off of our nation’s envisioned industrial diversification and self-sustaining economy with 100% in-country capacity utilization and development.”
The NIA President then announced the selection of Professor Osinbajo as the grand patron of NIA’s Integrated Infrastructure Conference scheduled for October 2022.
The NIA made a presentation on the implementation guide of the Institute’s Integrated Infrastructure Research for Development Conference.
Among other members of the NIA were 1st Vice President; Sani Saulawa, Mr. Mobolaji Adeniyi, 2nd Vice President; Mr. Chioma Wogu-Ogbonna, 3rd Vice President; General Secretary, Mr. Chike Ibeanu, and former President of the Institute, Obong Attah. Attah was the Governor of Akwa Ibom State from 1999 to 2007.