By Chidinma Agu
Lagos – The Code and Standards Committee of the Nigerian Institution of Mechanical and Electronics Engineers (NIMechE) on Friday advised the Federal Government to treat the earth movements happening in parts of the country as a very serious issue.
It said that the Federal Government should treat it as a serious environmental and ecological challenge that needed urgent attention.
Its chairman, Mr Seun Faluyi, gave the advice at the ongoing 2nd educational seminar of the International Code Council – Nigeria National Chapter (ICC-NNC) in Lagos.
Faluyi said this in a keynote address on ‘Application of Codes and Standards in the Design and Construction of Resilience Infrastructure in the Oil and Gas Industry.’
According to him, the movements should not be dismissed as just an earth tremor without researching deeply into it.
“Everybody believes that Nigeria is not on earthquake-prone zone, and as such the earth movements happening round the country, especially, in Abuja had been dismissed as just earth tremor.
“But, Abuja is not the only area where either legal or illegal, is ongoing in the country.
“First, it was Abuja, now similar movements had been experienced in some other states.
“Do we continue to believe the earth tremor theory?
“Now is the time to research into and see how natural occurrences are changing the nation’s landscape and we prepare for future worst disaster,” he said.
Faluyi said that adhering 100 per cent to codes and standards in the construction and the building industry was key to solving most of the occurrences in the environment.
He said having proper codes and standards and working with them in every level of individual’s operations, would go a long way in reducing disasters when they occurred.
Faluyi said that the ICC had come up with codes and standards which would serve as minimum standards globally.
He said that the ICC standards could be domesticated to enable professionals choose whether to upscale them to suit local requirements.
Faluyi said that governments should also brace up to setting codes and standards needed for erecting buildings in areas prone to earth movements.
He said that it would cost the government more to rebuild damaged infrastructure if it should neglect codes and standards.
According to him, the cost in terms of human, material and financial resources and attendant environmental pollution is enormous to the oil and gas industry.
Faluyi commended the industry for not compromising codes and standards as well as other international best practices.
He said that if similar devotion was given to every other aspect of the nation’s endeavours, Nigeria would be better for it.