The Architects Registration Council of Nigeria (ARCON) has called on all higher institutions of learning in the country, running architecture programmes without accreditation to desist from such practice, saying it is illegal.
President, Sir Dipo Ajayi, gave the warning last week during the 13th colloquium post-press briefing in Lagos.
Ajayi, who noted that, despite the COVID-19 challenge, the council has not failed in carrying out due accreditations of schools across the country, however, lamented that some persons are still circumventing the process of validation for their programmes on architecture.
He said irrespective of other validations obtained by such schools from other agencies of government, no programme on architecture should be run without ARCON’s approval and accreditation.
The accreditation, he said now covers both Nigerian universities and polytechnics, warning that the council will not hesitate to wield the big stick against any school found to be committing any infractions.
According to him, the council derives the power to register and control the practice of architecture in Nigeria and maintains a register of architects and architectural firms respectively in line with the enabling Act.
He said this call was necessary, as it had been discovered that some unsuspecting public has been patronising some of these unregistered schools, saying anyone who fails to do due diligence on the school of architecture before enlisting does so at his or her peril.
“On this note, it would be imperative that I mention that the Council requires that universities and polytechnics graduating students in architecture ensure that their programs are duly accredited by the council.
“This cannot be taken for granted as there is no place for graduates of unaccredited programmes within the profession to practice.
“The council will not hesitate to wield the big stick within the ambit of the law on such institutions going forward”, Ajayi, said.
The president added that the council might soon publish names of accredited schools of architecture in the country.
He said that the 13th colloquium, which many adjudged as the best in recent times, made far-reaching recommendations.
Some of them include that both the architectural professionals and academia need to integrate a broad-based curriculum into the schools of architecture.
This, he said, should be expanded to respond to the urgent needs of tackling post-COVID-19 built environment issues and probable future pandemics.
Also, the government should initiate the framework and drive the mechanism to reconfigure reimagining, and retrofit existing housing stock, initiate new post-COVID-19 standardised housing for the public.
Ajayi, who is also a titled chief in Ekiti, said that government at all levels, should partner with the architectural profession to provide emergency shelter solutions that are compliant with sustainable standards as delineated in the proceedings of the colloquium.