Law to curb shoddy building constructions

March 7, 2012 2:55 pm


Cases of collapsed buildings have led to the need to tighten regulations/ File photo
NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 7 – The Ministry of Public Works has moved to tighten regulation of the building and construction industry with a proposed Quantity Surveyor’s Bill.

Minister Chris Obure said on Wednesday that the draft Bill proposes the creation of a Quantity Surveyors Registration Board with a mandate to register all qualified practitioners in the profession.

“We have two Bills which we intend to bring. One is the revision of Chapter 525 of the current laws that relate to the professions of Architecture and Quantity Surveying. There are a lot of inadequacies in that regime because there was an Act of Parliament that was enacted a long time ago and I think it has been overtaken by the various technological developments,” he said.

He said the new regulations would lead to a higher quality of buildings and reduce loss of life from the collapse structurally defective buildings.

“We want to ensure that all these pretenders who pretend to be quantity surveyors and architects – the quacks – are rooted out,” he said.

He explained that the ministry was also seeking to amend existing laws to stop the infiltration of the construction industry by cowboy contractors.

He said the proposed amendments were before the Cabinet for approval.

“The Quantity Surveyors draft Bill has been prepared and it’s going to be discussed with the relevant stakeholders,” he said.

He further stated that the ministry was working with other stakeholders to review the current building code.

Obure described the current law as archaic since it requires the use of outdated technology and procedures which contribute to high building costs.

He pointed out that once revised, the code will ensure the construction of safe and affordable housing.

The ministry has also launched the implementation of a Quantity Management System based on ISO 9000 standards which Obure stated would catapult the ministry forward by putting in structural systems that will enable it deliver quality services.

He said that the certification would also bring the ministry closer to reform measures needed to deliver its mandate.

“Because of those very high expectations of the general public, we need to respond and this will be by way of placing greater emphasis to our work. It is going to be by way of changing our attitude,” he stated.

He explained that the reforms were also expected to put the ministry on track with the implementation of the new constitution.

“With the coming in of the new Constitution, the public is now very much aware of their rights and they will continue to demand their rights from us and accountability. They want to know how we spent the resources given to us by Parliament for their benefit.”


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