Abuja – Senate President Bukola Saraki on Thursday charged estate surveyors to evolve strategies that would check corruption within the profession and ensure a high standard of professional conduct by practitioners.
Saraki gave the charge while declaring open the 46th Annual Conference of the Nigerian Institution of Estate Surveyors and Valuers (NIESV) in Abuja.
He was represented by the Chairman, Senate Committee on Housing, Sen. Barnabas Gemade.
The theme of the conference is: “City Growth: Issues and Challenges of Urban Sustainability in Nigeria’’.
Saraki noted that this year’s theme was consistent with the current administration’s determination to defeat corruption by doing things differently in order to instil renewed hope in the citizenry.
“This conference, therefore, serves as a veritable opportunity for the Institution to partner with the new administration to deliver on set goals that will significantly improve the welfare and living standards of our people.
“As managers of land, buildings and other facilities, you are in a prime position to develop effective strategies that will cleanse the industry and make it attractive enough for meaningful collaborations.
“A situation whereby the real sector is riddled with cases of inflation of rents, over-priced land, lack of integrity and sundry corruption cannot augur well for the development of the industry.”
Saraki expressed the resolve of the National Assembly to work with relevant professional bodies to achieve sustainable development of the nation through oversight activities and effective legislations.
He pledged the preparedness of the Legislature to work with the recommendations of this year’s conference “in the bid to encourage city growth and stimulate urban development”.
“Our 8th Senate has adopted a working Legislative Agenda which will partner with professional bodies such as your institution to realise the effective implementation of government agenda.
He urged the participants to formulate useful and enduring strategies towards generating necessary funding for the development of the real sector in Nigeria while also ensuring affordability for subscribers.
Earlier, NIESV President, Mr James Omeru, said that the 2016 conference would focus on articulating suggestions to guide government’s effort toward sustainable city development.
Omeru noted that the poor implementation of the Abuja Master Plan would be corrected, if the government would allow estate surveyors to exhibit their expertise in urban management.
“This year’s theme has been carefully chosen as estate surveyors and valuers are stakeholders and professionals with relevant skills which guide policies for shaping cities.
“The FCT was conceptualised to be a model sustainable city in contrast to what obtained in the former capital city of Lagos.
“However, FCT is growing very fast but unfortunately some of the challenges, especially sustainability issues, witnessed in Lagos are now becoming stark realties in the city.
“What we are seeing in Abuja and other Nigerian cites today can be reversed, if estate surveyors and valuers are given conducive environment to demonstrate our professional skills and expertise in urban governance,” he stressed.
Meanwhile, the Institution has dedicated Friday for sports, social activities and fitness walk while a gala night is scheduled to wrap up the conference on Saturday. (NAN)