SON, Stakeholders To Reposition Standards For Cement Production

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The Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) has held a stakeholders’ Technical Committee Forum on the review of standard for Cement NIS 444-1-2014 with the theme: “Repositioning the Cement sub- sector”.

The forum, which held in Lagos, comes four years after the Federal Government approved new cement standard for the producers, aimed at  reviewing the quality of the products.

The grade-strengths of cement production in Nigeria have been NlS 444-1, adopted as conformity criteria for cement.

The committee in the wake of  protests against the building collapse, fingered low quality of cement as a key factor. There were  fears over misapplication of the different strength classes of cement allegedly attributed as the cause of frequent collapse of buildings in the country.

At the forum, SON’s Director-General, Mr. Osita Aboloma, noted that the exercise is “imperative as standards can be reviewed after five years or at anytime at the instance of the stakeholders or if found inadequate due to changes in technology, test methods and government policy”.

Aboloma, represented by the Director, Standards Development, Mrs. Chinyere Egwuonwu, said cement standard is a important, given that about 80 per cent or more of buildings and other infrastructural development of any nation are carried out with the use of cement. He expressed confidence that the proposed standard will help monitor the quality of cement in Nigeria as well as checkmate the menace of incessant collapse of buildings and concrete structures by poor cement quality and application.

Egwuonwu said this makes the review of the NIS444-1-2014 very necessary so that the country can attain world best standard, while  promoting product sales.

She maintained that to develop a certain standard for the country certain principles must be adhered to because the country also belong to an international standard body.

“Cement is a binder for all the components of the building and its poor application in the construction has been blamed for failures and collapse in the building and construction industry. The standard is a consensus document that promotes trade and ensure a positive impact on the national economy, if strictly adhered to. “Standard development is a stakeholders responsibility for which the SON provides the secretariat,” she said.

The Chairman, Technical Committee for the review, Professor Joseph Odigwe, said the forum was aimed at regulating the standard of the product in the country and the concentration  is to create standard for all brands of cement in the country.

The Founder, Building Collapse and Prevention Guild (BCPG) Mr. Kunle Awobolu, advised that government can help in the reduction of prices of cement through the provision of infrastructure such as road and electricity, adding that cost and price are as important as standard.

The national president of block moulders association of Nigeria, Mr. Rasheed Adebowale, explained that the way cement is mixed is of great concern.

He, therefore, called on the public and the SON to assist the association in identifying quacks in the system because they cannot do it alone.

 

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