Adoption of new building techniques has been identified as the panacea for inadequacies in the building workmanship. As such, there in the need to ensure that practioners of the profession are up-to-date skill wise.
Speaking at the inauguration ceremony of the new executive members of the Lagos State Bricklayers Association held at the National Stadium, Surulere, Lagos, last week, Mr. Kunle Awobodu, a professional builder and the chairman of the event stressed the importance of skills upgrading in the trade of brick or block laying and rendering.
Awobodu, who is the First Vice President of the Nigerian Institute of Building (NIOB) and former President of Building Collapse Prevention Guild (BCPG), informed that when coaches of bricks or blocks are not perfectly laid, it would result in higher consumption of mortar. As such, corrective measures during rendering that required excessive filling with mortar in order to achieve a flat and smooth wall surface would eventually create cracks in the wall surface.
He therefore advised the bricklayers to abide by the appropriate construction procedure from the beginning in their aspect of work on site rather than make bypass that could lead to shoddy job.
“On site, when the bricklayer adhered to technical guidelines being provided by the professional builder in charge of the building production, the outcome would usually meet the expectations of the eagle eyed client and other stakeholders”, he said, urging the bricklayers to participate in the ongoing skills acquisition programme for building artisans at approved training centres across the six geo- political zones in Nigeria.
The skills acquisition exercise is the federal government N-Power Programme that is being coordinated by the office of the Vice President of Nigeria under the National Social Investment Office (NSIO) in partnership with the regulatory body of the building sector, the Council of Registered Builders of Nigeria (CORBON).
Awobodu, who is a board member of CORBON added that an assessment tour of the training centres revealed that majority of those learning masonry trade were graduates of various disciplines from different institutions of higher learning. “Therefore, with this development, one could logically deduce that future masons or bricklayers would be more advanced in technical knowledge and skills”.
Another Speaker, Mr. Gbola Oba, a director at ULDA Institute, laid emphasis on the need for bricklayers to submit themselves for assessment under the National Vocational Qualifications Framework (NVQF) in order to discover the shortcoming of every bricklayer, proffer the remedy and place them in the appropriate grade.
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