Building Collapse: FCTA to Set Up Material Testing Lab, Audit Completed Structures

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The FCT Administration is working to establish a material testing laboratory in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja to ensure that all on-going construction works in the Territory meet  structural integrity requirements.
The FCT Minister, Muhammad  Bello, made this disclosure at the weekend while receiving the Managing Director of the Ahmadu Bello University Consultancy Services, Professor Suleiman Karwai, who paid him a visit in his office in Abuja.
The minister said that the establishment of the laboratory had become necessary to enable the administration regularly and independently monitor all on-going projects across the territory to avoid any mishap during and after constructions of public and private projects.
He restated that the laboratory would give the government a second means of independent check on material use for houses under construction either privately or publicly owned as well as other infrastructural development like bridges and culverts by ensuring quality control.
collapsed buildingAccording to him, building collapses can be avoided with strong institutional supervision of projects either publicly or privately owned.
Bello remarked that the fact that Abuja has never in history experienced collapse of any public building or public infrastructure shows that the FCT Administration that has since been handling such projects has maintained strict supervision with the highest quality standard.
He said although the Federal Housing Authority (FHA) solely supervised the recent collapsed building in Gwarinpa II District of Abuja, the FCT Administration would use that unfortunate incident to correct so many things in the building industry in the territory.
“I’m sure you know that that building in Gwarimpa was not supervised by any of our agencies. It was basically handled by the FHA under very lose corporate governance issues because I saw their preliminary report and as you all know, that builder was directed to stop work in March this year. Unfortunately, they continued and because of the weakness in the system nobody stopped him,” he decried.
His words: “The Gwarinpa building collapse though developed by a private person and wholly supervised by the Federal Housing Authority, it is an indictment of the entire system”.
The minister revealed that the FCT Development Control Department will soon embark on post development audit of completed houses in Abuja to ascertain that what was earlier approved was not changed afterward.
Bello said that the FCT Administration would also embark on registration of all material testing laboratories operating in the Federal Capital territory individually or corporately owned and also step-up surveillance of their facilities for effective control.
Speaking earlier, the Managing Director of the Ahmadu Bello Consultancy Services, Professor Suleiman Karwai, said that the delegation was in Abuja to strengthen the existing cordial relationship between the University and the FCTA.
He promised to continue to partner with the FCTA in the areas of training, exchange expertise in civil engineering and other infrastructural development know how.

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