By Kingsley Adegboye
National Board for Technical Education NBTE, and Architects’ Registration Council of Nigeria ARCON, have signed a memorandum of understanding MOU, that will henceforth enable ARCON license architecture graduates of accredited Polytechnics in the country as architectural technologists.
The accord between the two professional bodies had been until it was suspended about five years ago. The MOU is just a resuscitation of the programme between both parties.
The MoU among others have subsequently led the parties to establish a credible and time-tested accreditation process to boost the profession of architecture in the country.
At the brief signing ceremony recently were Dr. Adamu Kazaure, the immediate past Executive Secretary, NBTE, and Arc. (Sir) Dipo Ajayi, President, ARCON, and other senior members of NBTE and ARCON.
Ajayi, who was visibly elated, said he was satisfied with the agreement, adding that, it is a dream come true and that since the government recognizes both parties, they cannot afford to be working at cross-purposes.
ARCON president said it was high time both parties work more closely towards lifting architecture in Nigeria.
Besides their mandates, the MoU now empowers both parties to jointly accredit and approve programmes for training technologists, technicians and craftsmen as well as middle level and skilled manpower for the nation.
Expectedly, all products of architecture in those ARCON accredited institutions will be registered as architectural technologists, and they will be certified accordingly.
Endorsed by Arc. Umar Murnai, Registrar, ARCON and Kazaure, the MoU specifies that visitations to polytechnics, colleges of technology, vocational and innovation enterprise institutions, technical colleges and similar institutions for purposes of accreditation, re-accreditation, resources inspection and advisory visits shall be undertaken jointly by NBTE and ARCON appointed representatives for each programme.
The programmes of visitation to the institutions, it was learned shall be drawn up by NBTE at the beginning of each year or periodically, while ARCON will be informed and given adequate time to confirm the schedules and to appoint its representatives for each programme.
However, all schedules shall be forwarded to ARCON at least four weeks before the commencement date.
A joint template for accreditation, which shall encompass the academic and professional aspects of the training shall be evolved and used for uniformity purpose
Programmes of visitation to the institutions shall be funded by NBTE.
ARCON also shall receive the report of all accreditation visits conducted to architecture programmes in polytechnics, colleges of technology, vocational and innovation enterprise institutions and technical colleges via its representatives and consider the final outcome as deemed appropriate.
The MoU stated that team members of any accreditation visit to an architecture programme should be made up of fully registered architects and architectural technologists, who are financially up to date in the payment of their practising fees.
With effect from the date of this MoU, all the architecture programmes accredited by NBTE will enjoy ARCON recognition until they are due for accreditation.
Each fully accredited programme in the institutions shall be re-visited at least once every three years and ARCON’s appointed representative will be the chairman for accreditation visits to architecture programmes.