The Managing Director of Impacto Trading Nigeria Limited, Mr. Chiedozie Udeze, says there is a need to bridge the skills gap among artisans in the country.
Udeze, who spoke at a product knowledge seminar and training for tilers in Lagos organised by Impacto through its subsidiary, Nigerbaf, said anyone could become an artisan but skills acquisition would help to rid the sector of quackery.
“We want to get Nigerian tillers to improve their skills so that they can take their right place as artisans; right now, anyone can be a tiler but the skills will always make the difference,” he said.
Udeze noted that the company decided to educate tilers on the right application of its products, glue cement and others as end users in the built environment.
According to him, the actual application of such products is different from general skills acquisition, hence the need for the training.
He added, “We are doing backward integration by stopping importation and manufacturing here in the country. Ninety per cent of materials needed for cement can be found in Nigeria, so why do we import?
“And as a company, we have had a good relationship with tilers and want the built environment to grow and improve in terms of skills.”
The President, Lagos State Professional Tilers Association of Nigeria, Mr. Segun Adediran, said apart from helping tilers to acquire skills, working with them would also help the company to push its products to the end users.
The General Secretary, Nigerian Institute of Architects, Lagos State Chapter, Mr. Samson Akinyosoye, said the building and construction industry was an economic driver, and practitioners needed to constantly update their skills.
“Programmes like this will enhance artisans’ credibility and also give them the opportunity to be able to advise clients on quality of materials for their tiling works. The industry is huge and has huge potential for those who build their capacities,” he said.