Mrs Mercy Torkwase Iyortyer is the first female president of the Nigerian Institute of Quantity Surveyors (NIQS), established in 1969. In this interview, she bares her mind on issues bordering on the construction industry.
Mrs Mercy Torkwase Iyortyer
It`s almost two years since you became the 23rd president of the Nigerian Institute of Quantity Surveyors, how has it been leading a male-dominated professional body like NIQS?
It has been an interesting and a thrilling experience for me being the president of this great institute. I have been practicing the Quantity Surveying profession for 38 years and I have held various leadership positions during this period. What is different and exciting for me here is being at the pinnacle of my profession which I consider to be a great privilege.
As the first female president, I am happy to have been one of those women that have de-mystified the myth that women don’t belong to this industry. This has also afforded me the opportunity to showcase to the world that the Nigerian Institute of Quantity Surveyors is gender-friendly and does not discriminate against women. It all boils down to hard work, dedication, commitment and a vision for the institute.
Have you ever felt intimidated being the president of a male-dominated profession?
Not at all! My male professional colleagues have been very supportive, cooperative and fantastic to work with. What I can say about them is that once you demonstrate a high level of competence, passion and capability in your role, you will be respected and valued for what you can offer and they are more than willing to work with you.
What are your major challenges so far?
One of my key mandates is to create a greater awareness of the Quantity Surveying profession of which I believe we have made great strides in achieving the objective. However, due to the economic recession we are faced with today; the opportunities that would have availed a lot of our members have been stifled and dampened. This is indeed a big challenge for our members and myself. We are still optimistic that in the nearest future as the economy rebounds, these efforts will begin to yield positive results.
How relevant are quantity surveyors in the scheme of things in Nigeria presently?
The services of quantity surveyors are underutilised in Nigeria presently. Quantity surveyors are professionals trained to provide total cost and procurement management of capital projects from conception to commissioning. We play vital roles in prudent costing of buildings and engineering projects, procurement planning and implementation, budgetary planning, project management, costs monitoring, contract auditing, alternative dispute resolution and ensuring value for money of projects in the construction industry. In other words, we ensure efficient management of all resources deployed into construction projects. Clients who have engaged qualified and registered quantity surveyors on their construction projects can attest to our relevance.
Most of the professional functions of your members are still being encroached upon by other professionals, how have you redressed this so far?
We are addressing this encroachment by sensitising the public through media outlets and advocacy visits to relevant organisations and government institutions of our competencies and of the services that we offer.
How do you see a quantity surveyors in years to come particularly in areas of nation building and national development?
As cost and procurement managers of infrastructures and projects, we are relevant players in the construction industry. This industry contributes significantly to the national GDP, so quantity surveyors have to play an even greater role in national development in years to come.
How do you rate this present government?
It started slow and it was affected by the drastic fall in oil prices and output which plunged our economy into a recession. However, with the recent launch of the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) by President Muhammadu Buhari, we are hopeful that the plan will truly enhance economic growth and the much needed diversification to boost the economy.
|HOTEL LIST FOR THE ZONAL WORKSHOP|
|SNO.||VENUE||ROOM RATE||RECEPTION LINE||ADDRESS|
|ONDO STATE- AKURE|
|1||FONTEL HOTEL||7,000-36,500||07034656263||OFF ILESA ROAD AKURE, ONDO STATE|
|2||FLOURISH HOTELS & SUITES||10,000- 70,000||08161835703||ALAGBAKA AKURE, ONDO STATE|
|2||BENNY ROSE||10,000-15,750||08113943178||LYDIA STREET OFF FUTA ROAD AKURE, ONDO STATE|
|3||SOLAB SUITES||5,000-14,000||08068743761||FUTA ROAD SOUTH GATE AKURE,ONDO STATE.|
|4||SWAN INT.L HOTEL||4,500-7,000||08169005085||ILESA EXPRESS WAY AKURE,ONDO STATE|
|CROSS RIVER STATE-CALABAR|
|1||LE CHATEAU||10,000- 20,000||0802888541||30 MCC ROAD ,CALABAR|
|2||SPECS SUITES||6,000 -16,500||09039648917||10,EDYAN STREET ,STATE HOUSING ,CALABAR CROSS RIVER|
|3||ROYAL BIT HOTEL||9,500-12,500||08037115167||4.BARRACKS ROAD CALABR|
|5||THE NOBLE PLACE LTD||10,000-25,000||08064627756||2ND GATE PARLIAMENTARY VILLAGE|
|6||MONTY SUITES||13,500- 100,300||07034044047||BEHIND ZONE6 POLICE HEADQUARTERS’CALABAR, CROSS RIVER STATE|
|7||GOMAYS PLAZA HOTELS||8,000-20,000||08035321145||90.ATEKONG DRIVE CALABAR,CROSS RIVER STATE|
|NIGER STATE- MINNA|
|1||LUXURY HOTELS||16,000-26,000||08077213819||NITECO ROAD TUNGA ,MINNA NIGER STATE|
|2||HASKE HOTELS||9,000- 20,000||08077213819||NITECO ROAD TUNGA ,MINNA NIGER STATE|
|3||SHIRORO HOTEL||7.75-34,500||08035883280||DR.NNAMDI AZIKIWE WAY,MINNA NIGER STATE.|
|4||BILWAY HOTEL||3,000-5,000||08068591594||OFF YUSUF KOLAWOLE ROAD TUNGA, MINNA NIGER STATE|
|5||MOTOWN HOTEL||3,000-6,000||08166811010||OPP .GT BANK TUNGA MINNA NIGER STATE|
|1||DE NEVILA HOTELS LTD||8,500-60,000||08062304282||PLOT.3/4 ABUBAKAR KOGO ROAD,NEW EXTENSION OFF CONSTITUTION RD KADUNA.|
|2||ASO MOEL KADUNA||7,200-19,500||08068871996||14 MUHAMMADU BUHARI WAY ,KADUNA KADUNA STATE|
|3||CRYSTAL GARDENS HOTEL||12,900- 56,000||08024124387||103 ISA KAITA ROAD KADUNA, KADUNA STATE. KADUNA STATE|
|4||ASAA PYRAMID||10,000-60,000||08034657770||13 LAFIA ROAD,OFF INDEPENDENCE WAY,KADUNA,KADUNA STATE|
|5||BAFRA INTERNATIONAL HOTELS LTD||15,300-56,500||08038824225||11B YAKUBU AVENUE OFF ALKALI ROAD, KADUNA, KADUNA STATE|
|OWERRI- IMO STATE|
|1||NEWTON HOTELS||10,000-35,000||PLOT H2 ALONG IMO SPECIALIST HOSPITAL ROAD,OFF PH RD NEW OWERRI ,IMO STATE|
|ADAMAWA STATE- YOLA|
|1||SILVER H & S NIG .LTD||7.000 FLAT||08030740307||PHASE II BABAJURE FED.HOUSING ESTATE ,YOLA,ADAMAWA STATE|