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Engineers, builders urged to follow physical planning laws

The dictates of physical planning laws in Lagos have been described as a panacea to increasing cases of building collapse in the state.

Speaking at a sensitisation workshop organised by the Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE) Ikeja branch, Lagos state Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development, Idrisokanla Salako stressed the need for all to adopt attitude of compliance to regulations and endeavour to build right by doing the needful, including obtaining planning permits before building, subjecting building construction to stage supervision by LASBCA and getting the certificate of completion and fitness for habitation before moving into any building.

Describing building collapse as an aberration and needless distraction he said: ‘’We must act in unison to promote livability, sustainability and organised environment. Under no pretext should anyone encourage illegality by behaving contrary to the dictates of the physical planning laws or even attempting to compromise the process.

“To reinforce compliance, it is important to maintain effective monitoring while advocating and enforcing the desired behaviour where necessary.

“As you are aware, the Ministry of Physical Planning and Urban Development and its agencies are in the vanguard of making Lagos a 21st century economy, this tall vision cannot be attained without the cooperation of all concerned.

“To encourage bottom-up approach in governance and advance the cause of transparency and accountability, the commissioner explained that the Physical Planning MDAs in Lagos state instituted face-to-face stakeholders’ meetings and created avenues for feedback on their activities, through diverse platforms.’’

Read also: Building collapse investigations and lack of open measures

Maintaining that the way to secure the physical environment for a peaceful, harmonious and sustainable Lagos state is to forge a good sense of voluntary compliance, he said: “It is noteworthy that the so-called developed world have not achieved success through magic, but a shared culture of willful compliance to regulations. We can do it too when we share a common vision of putting society first.

“As a matter of fact, the human element is germane in what becomes of our environment. Therefore, let everyone of us, be it professionals in the built environment, decision-makers or land users, retune ourselves towards cultivating the right attitude that will promote livability and protect the earth.’’

Chairman NSE, Ikeja branch Oluwatosin Ogunmola who also spoke at the workshop explained that the training which was part of his association’s activities to mark the 2022 Engineering week which came under the theme, ‘Taking responsibility for Nigeria’s transformation: The imperatives for Engineers,’ aimed to sensitise stakeholders in the built environment on the need to ensure there are no gaps in the building processes.

Ogunmola said: “Buildings don’t just collapse, buildings could collapse when there are gaps in the processes of building, so it is only when engineers in particular alongside other professionals look the other way, make short cut, thereby compromising the entire processes.’’

He therefore, called on engineers and other professions involve in built environment to ensure the processes are not compromised in any way.

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