‘Neglect of Project Managers to Blame for Building Collapses’

Emmanuel Addeh in Abuja
The Chartered Institute of Project Managers of Nigeria (CIPMN) has argued that the country’s failure to respect professionals within the organisation is responsible for the challenge of building collapses as well as substandard and abandoned projects in Nigeria.

Speaking in Abuja, before the Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the body, President and Chairman of Council, Dr. Victoria Okoronkwo, explained that there was the need to advance and propagate the critical role of professional project managers in building a society free of escalating vices.

She maintained that a key difference between developed nations and Nigeria is that those countries rank project managers and project management very high among other professions.

Okoronkwo said: “The sad story in the case of our country is that this dependable profession has not only been neglected, relegated or misunderstood, but has been receiving bashing from subject matter experts whose narrow-mindedness has regarded and restricted projects to construction development.

“We want to use this medium to clarify that the teaching, theory and principles applied to the practice of engineering, accounting, finance, broadcasting, building etc. is the way project management should be a stand-alone profession.

“Until and unless this view is deliberately shared by Nigeria and Nigeria project owners (government at all levels, corporate bodies and private individuals), the woes being experienced with projects in the form of substandard project delivery, outright project abandonment might continue unabated.”

According to her, there is a nexus between the lack of respect for professional project managers and the continued occurrence of building collapse and improper accountability for resources allocated to projects.
The CIPMN helmsman called on Nigerians to ensure that trained and certified project managers are engaged or employed to head all projects no matter the size and volume. “This way, our regulatory functions be properly channelled and directed,” she noted.

She further urged enthusiastic Nigerians who wish to practice project management in Nigeria, to as a matter of urgent national importance, register with CIPMN to be properly and professionally trained with the organisation’s project delivery methodology.

Okoronkwo said that project managers with foreign certifications who wish to practice in Nigeria should equally be registered by CIPMN in line with Section 14(8)of the CIPMN establishment Act.

She stated that very soon the actual enumeration, inventory taking and documentation of all projects at various levels, existing projects without qualified, certified or professional project managers, will be embarked upon to ascertain the degree of either commitment or negligence of project owner.

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