BrandArena: IFMA Nigeria Chapter Calls for Stakeholders' Collaboration in the Built Environment

Monday 13 November 2023

IFMA Nigeria Chapter Calls for Stakeholders' Collaboration in the Built Environment

The International Facility Managers Association (IFMA), Nigeria Chapter, has called for collaboration among stakeholders in the construction industry to create a better living environment for Nigerians, to ease the growing concern about the high number of problems plaguing Nigeria's built environment and the need for industry standardisation. 

The clarion call was made by ESV Olalekan Akinwumi, President of IFMA Nigeria, at the fourth Facility Management Advocacy Day in Lagos, which was entitled "Sustaining the Multi-Disciplinary Role of Facility Management: Harnessing the Prospect of Synergy in the Built Environment."

Akinwumi explained that IFMA organises the Advocacy Day discourse every year to bring together professionals in the built environment to bridge the existing knowledge gap in the sector for a more sustainable industry compliant with best practices worldwide.

He stated that IFMA, being an umbrella body for industry practitioners, is also fostering professional synergy, which will, in the long run, result in sustainable environments, better life expectancy, and progress for all and sundry.

In his keynote address, the Special Guest of Honour and former Minister for Works, HE Babatunde Raji Fashola, SAN, spoke on the political will to enforce deliberations on the Government's part and the stakeholders' willingness to follow through with the recommendations reached. 

Mr Fashola, SAN, represented by Engr Femi Akinyelure, urged stakeholders present to go the extra mile in educating the private sector to get on board the project, which, if sustained, would save the Nigerian economy astronomically.

"The political will is crucial, and in this case, the Government is leading the pack and has also created an enabling environment for this sector to thrive. It is therefore pertinent to continue to encourage the private sector with the understanding that most of the assets in the built environment are owned by the private sector to key into this rapidly expanding sector of the economy."

Giving his Goodwill message, the Special Adviser to the Lagos State Government on Works, Dr Adekunle Olayinka, opined that the state government will provide the necessary infrastructural assistance to the Association to thrive.

Olayinka, represented by Builder Mrs. Adenike Said, urged all states of the federation to key into the dream of IFMA to put a permanent end to the challenge of building collapse and its attendant loss of lives and properties.

"IFMA has shown the spirit of excellence in finding solutions to sustainability and maintenance issues necessitated by the population of the state and its attendant questions of transportation, infrastructure, and technology to meet growing needs across the country, especially in Lagos State. I charge the Association to leverage the opportunities of the strategic position of Lagos as one of the fastest-growing economies in the world. 

ESV Gbenga Ismail, Chairman, Nigerian Institution of Estate Surveyors and Valuers (NIESV) Lagos State representative of the National President, ESV Johnbull Amayaevbo, also noted that “The need for synergy within the built environment is particularly important in Nigeria, where we are facing some challenges, including rapid urbanization, climate change, and infrastructure deficit. To address these challenges, we need to adopt a holistic approach to urban planning and development. This means that we need to break down the silos between different disciplines and work together to create solutions that meet the needs of all stakeholders.”

The goal of the annual Advocacy Day is to entrench standardisation in the built industry, bridge the existing knowledge gaps, encourage training and capacity building, provide advisory on best facility management practices, and lead in the campaign on the need to embrace facility management in the country.

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