Olomola is the 21st NITP president

Town planners in the country have been called upon to look into the issue of growing urban slums and ensure the renewal of existing slum settlements, while preventing the emergence of new ones.
A prominent businessman, Lt. Gen. Theophilus Danjuma (retd), made the call in Lagos during the investiture of Dr. Femi Olomola as the 21st President of the Nigerian Institute of Town Planners.
Represented by Major General Tanko Abdul, Danjuma said the NITP should look into the environmental challenges facing the country and develop indigenous means of addressing them.
“We should begin to ask questions such as why our environment is devoid of beauty and aesthetics, what is the institute doing about global warming and how it affects our environment and the issue of slums in our cities. These issues need to be addressed,” he said.
He commended the institute for the election that brought in Olomola as president, adding that it showed that democracy had taken root in the country.
Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, who was represented by the Commissioner of Physical Planning and Urban Development, Mr. Toyin Ayinde, advised members of the institute to work closely with other professionals in the built environment to further develop the country.
“Professionalism is unique; countries that have progressed have done so because of the contribution of their professionals. Our role as professionals is to contribute our quota to the development of the country,” he said.
The President, Town Planners Registration Council of Nigeria, Prof. Layi Egunjobi, said the council and the NITP would create new opportunities for cooperation and mutual understanding.
He added that both bodies would also jointly address planning issues facing the country, including building collapse, domestication of urban and regional planning law by states, establishment of urban and regional commission at the federal level, planning for fragile states, and financing urban infrastructure, among others.
The President, Association of Professional Bodies of Nigeria, Mr. Foluso Fasoto, also called for collaboration among the professional bodies as well as government’s will power to effect the changes, which had been included in the planners’ policy.
Olomola, in his inaugural speech, said his administration would focus on a seven-point programme, including law and constitutional matters; promotion of national security and reduction of fraud; improving the asset base of the institute; and improving the current operational modalities.
Others are sustaining human capital development; extensive publicity and public enlightenment on the value of the profession; and evolving a master plan for the NITP.
“A seven-man committee has been set up to come up with a draft copy of the Land Use Planning Report. As the name implies, it is expected to accompany any application for the use of any land,” he said.

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