The President of the Ghana Institution of Engineers (GhIE), Mr Magnus Lincoln Quarshie, has challenged individuals and institutions to develop infrastructure that will last for generations.
“When we conceive of infrastructure, we must design and build to last forever. We must think of our children’s children and leave legacies that become wonders,” he stressed.
Mr Quarshie was speaking at the maiden edition of the Ghana Engineering Excellence Awards in Accra last Saturday.
The theme for the event was: “Design, build, construct and think forever”.
The Engineering Excellence Awards are aimed at honouring outstanding contributions of individuals, as well as organisations, who have promoted the work of engineers, innovations for public benefit and national development.
The award categories included academic and research, the private and the public sectors.
Mr Quarshie noted that the country was currently faced with the challenges of ill-maintained energy, water and transport infrastructure, partly as a result of inadequate funding.
He said the quality of materials used in construction, as well as the quality of labour, was also a major contributory factor which determined the lifespan of the country’s infrastructure.
He, nonetheless, expressed the conviction that the country could raise enough funding to design and build infrastructure that would last forever.
“Quality materials yield quality buildings, and good workmanship motivates workers to put in their best,” he said.
Mr Quarshie paid glowing tribute to the country’s first President, Dr Kwame Nkrumah, for his appreciation of the infrastructural needs of the nation, for which reason the College of Engineering was set up at the then University of Science and Technology (UST).
He said President Nkrumah, who wanted to see Ghanaian engineers at the forefront of the country’s infrastructural development and manufacturing industries, also offered scholarships to many to train outside to augment local capacity.
He said nations that made engineering a priority became worthy and mentioned China, Singapore and South Korea as examples, Mr Quarshie called on the country’s leaders to tap the skills and knowledge of local engineers, instead of always employing foreigners.
“If you have leaders who do not believe in your expertise as engineers, it is a problem,” he added.
source : Graphics Online