NSE plans bureau for engineering manpower planning

THE Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE) has concluded plans to set up a bureau for engineering manpower planning in its bid to advise government accurately on the need and number of engineering personnel the country needs.
The newly elected President of the Society, Otis Anyaeji, who disclosed this in Abuja at his inaugural speech as the 30th President of NSE, said the mandate of the bureau would include engineering manpower survey, engineering manpower compensation survey, impact of technology trending on requirement for engineering, maintenance of the Nigerian engineering manpower inventory and directories.
He added: “Different fields, types, and levels of engineering personnel for example civil, mechanical, electrical among others, technicians, technologists, craftsmen would be required. These have implications on the education policy for engineering education at tertiary level, and for science education at secondary and primary schools. It is the responsibility of governments and professional engineering bodies around the world to determine on a planning basis the needs and numbers of engineers in a country. In 2008, South Africa set a target of producing up to 2500 Engineers per year, while Morocco in 2007 ushered in a plan to train 10,000 Engineers per annum. Malaysia stated in 2009 that the then 60,000 Engineers in the country would need to be increased to 200,000 by the year 2020.”
While lauding the Federal Government for engaging costing experts to scrutinize the 2016 budget estimates, Anyaeji hinted that the NSE was not aware if engineers were part of the costing experts that were engaged.
“It is our plan to get cost engineers play a leading role in the national budgeting process, in as much as we recognize the roles of cost accountants (historical costs), and quantity surveyors (building costs). Engineering projects account for more than 90% of capital costs and so Cost Engineers have more to contribute in aid of realistic capital costs and operating costs estimating on the national budget,” he explained.
The NSE boss also disclosed that a bureau for Cost Trends would also be established in the course of the year to maintain a cost database on engineering projects and serve as resource to engineering valuation of existing assets and also complement the work of the Institute of Appraisers and Cost Engineers, which is a division of the NSE.
He also said the NSE would soon release the second edition of its Nigerian Infrastructural Report Card next year. He added that the Society would produce an action plan for advocacy for appropriate funding for requisite improvements of various infrastructure and promotion of some laws necessary to be enacted on the basis of its 2015 edition of the Nigerian Infrastructural Report Card.
Anyaeji stated that the NSE under his leadership would encourage Engineers to make force-fit connection with public policy going forward. He also alleged that it seems that selection into public office and appointment pattern has shown a deliberate and conscious scheme to keep Engineers out of the public policy spaces in both the executive and legislative arms of government.
He added: “To be able to change this, our Engineers will be encouraged to assume positions of leadership from which they can use their knowledge and skill to influence positively the making of public policy and in administration of government, industry, agriculture and infrastructure. This presupposes a new engineering curriculum that offers political, public policy, laws and regulations, funding, mechanisms, public enlightenment and engagement, government-business interaction and public service responsibility of professionals.”

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