THE Federal Government has challenged Quantity Surveyors Registration Board of Nigeria on the need to ensure that the costs of government projects are not unduly inflated.
Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, pointed out that one of the root causes of high costs of projects in the construction industry was corruption.
He said this had had far-reaching negative consequences on national development and the economic wellbeing of the people.
Speaking in Abuja at the 2017 National Project Cost Reduction Summit organized by QSRBN, the Minister who was presented by Sani Gidado, HOD, Public Building at the Ministry, noted that the fight against corruption should be embraced by every Nigerian.
He said: “Although a construction project could ordinarily be costly as a result of deliberate requirements and choices made by the project owner, our focus here is on high costs of projects brought about by corrupt practices.”
Fashola said this was a challenge that must be overcome if the nation was to achieve the much desired value for money in infrastructure development.
He said decay of infrastructure was one of the indices of underdevelopment that corruption promotes in a nation, noting that the construction sector remained one of the most important in any economy because of the profound effects of the activities of that sector on the overall national economy.
Fashola, said that apart from construction sector’s known capacity to generate employment on a large scale, its huge multiplier effects on the economy stood it out as a leading sector of economic development.
He said the problem of high costs of projects in the country’s construction sector could be tackled through a systematic approach of ensuring a regime of proper project costing.
“This will guarantee availability of more funds for the development of our infrastructure. By ensuring efficient allocation and utilization of resources in this manner, the economy will be enabled to appropriate the maximum benefits from this strategic sector. We all, therefore, as stakeholders, have a duty to ensure value for money through proper project costing in this all- pervasive sector” Fashola said.
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