The Chairman of the Nigerian Institute of Quantity Surveyors (NIQS) Abuja Chapter, QS Bede Nnanna Ejiekwu, FNIQS has said that it will be difficult for the Federal Government to finance its infrastructural projects though budgetary provisions alone.
QS Ejiekwu stated this during his welcome address at a two-day workshop organized by the NIQS FCT (Unity) Chapter with the theme “Sustainable Funding and Financial Modelling For Infrastructural Projects in Nigeria”.
He said that the theme of the conference is very apt as country is facing serious financial and economic challenges with rising deficit, debt, shrinking revenue and galloping inflation.
He added, “Faced with these challenges, we do think, it will be pretty difficult to finance infrastructural projects in Nigeria through budgetary provisions only.
“It is basically obvious that the only solution to fund infrastructural projects should be through alternative and sustainable funding and financial modeling approach.”
On his part, the NIQS National President, QS Shonubi Michael Olayemi FNIQS stated that the theme of the conference is expedient because as construction cost managers, surveyors have seen that it is difficult for clients to fund their different construction projects in the present economic climate which indicate the need for alternate funding.
He called on stakeholders in the built and construction sector to ensure smooth synergy between the public and private sector.
He asked for transparency on the part of officials to ensure that infrastructural projects are given to those with the capacity to deliver in terms of sourcing for the necessary finance, technical know-how and other necessary requirements.
He said, “What we have always found out is that projects are given to what I will call ‘rent collectors’. They come in, they get the project but lack the required finance. They begin to run around looking for other people to partner with and provide funds and ultimately the project is left to suffer.”
QS Shonubi also stated that the incessant building collapse that have been happening across the country is not unconnected to lack of finance which has made home owners and developers seek for ways to reduce cost by employing the services of non-professionals and quacks.
While asking for action on the part of government to combat building collapse, he said, “The way government has been going about the issue of the collapse is also suspect.
“When buildings collapse, the first thing they ought to do is find out the cause of the collapse but they usually just go in and demolish such structure. Although they usually say it is an effort to extricate survivors, it should be done in a way that the evidence is protected because we need to really find out the causes of these collapses.”
The conference aims at exposing member of NIQS to issues surrounding infrastructural funding and to develop their competences in this emerging area.