Senate on Thursday forged ahead in its move to approve the use of a comprehensive and integrated approach in technology development and transfer, sustainable capacity building and investment promotion for cost-effective building and road construction practices in the country.
Consequently, a bill to that effect, which was first read on the floor of the upper legislative chamber on Wednesday, March 22, 2017, was passed for second reading during plenary.
The bill is to establish the Nigerian Building and Road Research Institute, NBRRI to build capacity, conduct integrated applied research and development, R&D in roads, buildings and engineering materials.
In his lead debate on the bill, its sponsor, Senator Mustapha Bukar (APC Katsina North) said the need to have an established law for NBRRI Act is long overdue and necessary.
He explained that the vision of NBRRI “is to evolve innovations that will enhance job creation, wealth generation and poverty reduction as well as competitive indigenous construction companies capable of meeting global standards”.
The lawmaker added that “the mission of NBRRI is to improve the quality of life of Nigerians in the area of affordable housing and increased economic empowerment through applied integrated R&D, capacity building and robust extension services”.
While explaining the rationale for the new law, he said: “since the decree establishing NBRRI in 1977, the world has witnessed lots of transformations and innovations in science, technology and engineering”.
“In roads and buildings, numerous advances have been made in construction materials and construction techniques while progress in engineering disciplines have led to the emergence of new, ideas, new approaches, new education methodologies , new R&D mechanisms and equipment, nanotechnologies, green construction solutions and materials as well as associated progress in space computer, ICT, etc”, he stressed.
He affirmed that to dissolve the old NBRRI law and establish a new one, will go a long way to inject new and contemporary R&D vision to drive innovations that will propel the nation into the global arena in building, road and construction sectors for improved economy.
Senator Bukar, a chartered engineer further explained that the erstwhile unexplored R&D extensions to green processes, nanotechnologies and emerging solutions would now be within the purview of talented and adventurous young Nigerian research officers.
“The encouragement of the Institute by approving this bill to be enacted into law will lead to unassailable achievements in the sensitive and essential sectors of home and housing ownership and road infrastructure”, he submitted.