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The National Construction Authority has launched the Construction Excellence Awards (CEAs) 2019, a platform that will recognize achievements, developments and innovation within Kenya’s booming construction industry.
Speaking at the official launch held at the Royal Tulip Canaan Hotel, NCA Ag. Executive Director Eng. Maurice Akech noted that the time had come for the industry’s top performers to be recognized. “NCA continuously seeks to establish programmes that will enrich the industry, build capacity and uphold standards of excellence. The Construction Excellence Awards will provide a platform to showcase the best of what the industry has to offer.”
The Awards are set to highlight the positive aspects of construction and will feature categories recognizing outstanding contractors, construction workers and projects. The judging panel will comprise of industry experts cutting across both the public and private sectors, as well as various facets of the industry. “Kenya is a regional leader when it comes to development, and we need to show the world what our industry is capable of,” Eng Akech said.
NCA Vice Chairperson Prof. Godrick Bulitia noted that the Authority was in a unique position to push for the awards as the industry regulator. “Contractors, construction workers and developers are undeniably the most critical tri factor of human resource in the construction industry’s value chain,” he said, continuing, “Section 19 of the National Construction Authority Act as read together with Section 5 (2) (i) empowers the Authority to maintain professional registers for contractors and construction projects and a database of accredited skilled workers and site supervisors. Many of the day to day activities of the Authority are centered around these primary stakeholders, whom we have been tasked with regulating to ensure the set construction standards are upheld. At NCA, we understand perhaps more than most the unique challenges that these stakeholders face, and are able to witness firsthand the hard work that they put in.”
Prof. Bulitia noted the importance of recognizing the construction industry’s positives. “In an industry that is unfortunately plagued by instances of non-compliance that have led to the loss of lives and livelihood, it is important to highlight those who honour the commitment to quality and uphold the highest standards in all that they do,” he said. “Instead of just decrying all that is wrong with the industry, we have created a platform to shine a light on the professionals who continuously make us proud.”
The Awards will feature three major categories, Contractor of the Year, Fundi of the Year and Project of the Year. Under Contractor of the Year, there are six sub-categories: Best Roads Contractor, Best Buildings Contractor, Best Water Works Contractor, Best Electrical Contractor, Best Mechanical Contractor and Best Contractor (Special Category), open to youth, women and persons with disability. Contractors will submit entries either under NCA 1-4 of NCA 4-8, depending on their category of registration with the Authority, determined by level of experience and financial capability. This will ensure a level of fairness in the competition. The contractor who scores the highest in any category entered will be awarded the overall Contractor of the Year award, which has a one million shilling (Kshs. 1,000,000) cash prize. The second category, Fundi of the Year has two sub categories, Best Construction Worker and Best Site Supervisor. The final category, Project of the Year also has two sub-categories, Most Sustainable Project or Most Innovative Project.
Qs. Moses Nyakiongora, the Chair of the Multi Sectoral Agency Consultative Committee (MSAAC) expressed his support for the Awards, stating that despite the challenges the industry is still facing, many great strides had been made, leading to a notable reduction in collapsed structures. “We may not be where we want to be, but we have moved far from where we were. The Construction Excellence Awards will provide evidence that the industry is indeed moving forward. In fact, we will recommend to the Ministry (Transport, Infrastructure, Housing, Urban Development and Public Works) that all winners of this competition be recommended for State commendations as awarded by His Excellency President Uhuru Kenyatta. That way, as government, we can truly recognize those who have excelled in the construction industry.”
The call for entries for the CEAs officially opens on June 18th, 2019, and will run for a period of three weeks. To be eligible to enter the competition, all professionals must be duly registered or accredited by the Authority, and all projects must have the requisite approvals from the relevant agencies. The Construction Excellence Awards will take place on November 8th, 2019.