Dangote Cement being loaded in a truck at Okene factory. Photo credit: Yalwa

By ADEBAYO OBAJEMU

The Dangote brand is fast expanding its business net with much gusto, a complex of factors according to the company has engineered its business venture into the real estate subsector of block making.

The company has said it is opening block factories in some states in Nigeria. The vision behind this new venture is to reduce the incidence of building collapse in Nigeria, which has over the years been one of the challenge of build sector.

Many experts in the build industry have consistently attributed this phenomenon of building collapse to the use of low-quality building materials and unprofessional mixing of cement with sand, gravel, granite,, and other building materials.

Dangote Cement said it’s disturbed by the incessant building collapse in the country, and fired by the zeal and determination that buyers and users of cement get value for money, DangCem has shown interest in the real estate sector in order to avert cases of building collapse in the country.

The company plans to establish a robust block making factory in few major states.
Otitolorin Ebenezer, a surveyor said ” the move is as yet the boldest challenge by a reputable organization to offer its hand in tackling incessant building collapse through the production of standard building materials.”

Architect Anjorin Adesanya of Archibuzz said “There is a need to train and retrain the categories of artisans involved in the building industry, we can commend Dangote for setting the ball rolling by its desire to be producing quality blocks.”

In his own contribution, Dr. Musa Ahmed of the department of Building, Ahmadu Bello University told Business Hallmark that “Dangote coming at this period with production of standard blocks is a great contribution, as it will reduce incidences of building collapse.”

Recall that building collapses in Nigeria have been on the increase in recent times. There are frequent reports of collapsed of buildings in major Nigerian cities like Lagos, Abuja, and Port Harcourt, etc and other parts of the world.
Findings on factors responsible for building collapses have attributed them to faulty design, negligence, incompetence, faulty construction, foundation failures, extraordinary loads and corruption among others.

Forces of nature were also identified as part of causes of building collapse.

This is coming at a time when artisans, block moulders, and bricklayers lack the required know-how and expertise needed in moulding and concrete production.

The company is filling a needed gap by rolling out its multipurpose factory, which if we’ll handled has the capacity to end incessant building collapse in the country, especially with a target to change the way and method adoptable in concrete mixing and block moulding by players in the building industry.

This development has the facility to provide an outlet for developers to purchase ready made well moulded blocks in large quantities for effective and standard buildings that would withstand time and climate changes.

The pilot scheme of the cement called BlocMaster Cement was formally launched by Dangote Cement PLC recently in Kano, Kano State.

Adesanya said “the block is overwhelmingly strong and so far the best for block moulding in Nigeria. The blocks have received laudable commendation from builders and engineers, even before it was officially rolled out recently.
It has variously been given credit as the best by the country’s engineers, builders and block makers, due to its rapid setting within an hour, its strength and top quality.

An avalanche of block makers have said the product has a certain innovative touch and strength, and this was confirmed after testing its strength and it was asserted to be the best product for building/construction for now, from the stable of Dangote cement.

Speaking at the official unveiling of the cement Kano State Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje called on all Nigerians to patronize the new cement to help minimize the menace of collapse building in the country
The Governor who was represented by the Secretary to the State Government Alhaji Usman Alhaji commended the Management of Dangote Group, adding that it has always been supportive in all sectors of the economy.

Group Managing Director, Dangote Cement Plc Eng. Joe Makoju said the new brand is a product of years of deep research, adding that it has been tested and approved by builders nationwide. According to him, it is strong and affordable to Nigerians because of its rapid setting, especially during raining season.

“This is a new era. This is a new quality. This is a product of research,” Mr. Makoju said.
The immediate past chairman, Nigeria Institute of Building and Director Consultancy Services, Science and Technical Schools Board, Kano State Abdullahi Alhassan SanSan said he was elated because the new cement block will address the issue of collapse building in the country.

Adesanya commended Dangote for this feat but advised that the company must never compromise on best standards. He reiterated that the fact that Dangote cement is of higher quality is a valid reason the company should not leave the job for the artisans, bricklayers, and moulders at the site; but it should pursue its mission in block moulding with determination to bring sanity to Nigeria’s housing and construction industry.

Meanwhile, it is pertinent to note that Dangote Cement has been at the forefront of the campaign for quality and standardization so as to save the nation from the headache associated with building collapse which leads to avoidable loss of lives and property.

 

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