As part of efforts to reduce incidences of building collapse, the Federal Capital Territory Administration FCTA said it is planning to conduct an integrity test on 653, 000 abandoned structures in the nation’s capital city.

Director, Department of Development Control, Muhktar Galadima disclosed this on Thursday at a meeting with engineering consultants and professional bodies in the built industry.

According to him, a number of abandoned buildings have been identified, hence the move to engage consultants to conduct integrity tests on the structures to determine their stability or otherwise.

According to him, there are about 653, 000 abandoned buildings in the territory, a development that has also enhanced criminal activities in the city.

He said; “We want to be more proactive; we don’t have to wait to be caught napping, that is why we had to call the consultants and other stakeholders, so that we can have discussions and strategize on how to prevent structural failure, otherwise known as building collapse, in Abuja.
“Some times back the Department of Development Control went out and identified a number of abandoned buildings, and some of these things have stayed for some time, so we need to engage consultants to conduct integrity tests on these structures to determine their stability or otherwise,” he explained.
On the timeline for the exercise, Galadima said; “City development is a continuous process. What we are doing is to create awareness and sensitization, that people should live up to their responsibilities. If we just fold our arms and some things happen, then we are not leaving up to expectations. So, we have to do something.
“The meeting with the consultants is just the first leg, the second leg is to invite all the owners of these buildings and tell them of the intention of the Administration.

“We are going to conduct this test and all structures that do not meet the required criteria will be removed because we are to safeguard lives and property.
“But those that are within the range of our remedial measures, we will make the necessary recommendations. And thereafter, we will tell them the policy direction, particularly on abandoned buildings.”

Also speaking, Deputy Registrar, Estate Surveyors and Valuers Registration Board of Nigeria (ESVRBN), Oyeteju Janet Shehu, stressed the importance of engaging professionals in the execution of jobs.
She said; “To mitigate the issue of building collapse, there is need for stakeholders especially the seven professionals in the built industry to identify our job functions because each of these professionals has their job roles.
“And if all of us stay within the ambit of our designated job description, part of the problem will be half-solved.”

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