Tuesday, March 24, 2020

THE President, Architects Registration Council of Nigeria (ARCON), Dipo Ajayi, has said the planned abolishment of the dichotomy between HND and BSc graduates may not apply to architects for now.

He said HND Architecture graduates are excluded from registration as they did not possess the requisite skill and knowledge to practise the profession in its purest sense; as the limitation of years of study does not afford them the opportunity to complete the modules.

He spoke on the sidelines of his 67th birthday celebration in Osborne Foreshore Estate, Ikoyi, Lagos at the weekend.

He wondered why some find it difficult to improve themselves academically but are desirous of appellations they are not qualified for.

He recalled that he started out as a draughtsman/carpenter before gaining admission to the university where it took him eight  years to qualify as an architect.

Calling for middle cadre professionals, he said in countries, such as China, Canada, middle manpower make more money than certified architects.

He said having weathered the storm between the Nigeria Institute of Architects (NIA) and ARCON on matters relating to examination malpractice and sanctioning erring architects, the body insists that only candidates with requisite professional training modules can be registered to practise and that HND architecture graduates do not have that.

Ajayi said this measure was taken to ensure that architecture graduates were well-groomed in design and delivery to avoid being linked with unwholesome practices and conducts.

According to him, ARCON is convinced more than ever that only the qualified are good enough to be registered as the profession plays a leading role in the building sector.

He said: “To accommodate the HND graduates and take them through modules to get them qualified to be registered, we came up with a programme known as Architect Regularisation Programme (ARP) to allow them make up the modules to qualify to be registered.

‘’We have also made provisions for them to formally seek admission to any university of their choice as long they are approved by the Nigeria Universities Commission to offer architecture to upgrade and obtain the required knowledge.  Currently over 30 universities in the country offer architecture we advise that they take advantage of the various platforms the body has provided.  As a body we are of the opinion that the complexities involved in architecture are much more that can be learned in four years in a polytechnic.”

On how he would reconcile the Federal Government’s annoucement on bridging the dichotomy between BSc and HND, Ajayi acknowledged the announcement but insisted that ARCON was not mandated to uphold it by registering those it believes, or by facts available, are not qualified to be addressed as architects.

He said the body had approached the Ministry of Education and the National Universities Commission to tinker with modules of Architecture training in universities to bring them at par with present realities and also make them competitive with universities abroad.

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