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General News of Sunday, 21 July 2019

Source: primenewsghana.com

Architect for National Cathedral qualified, can't suffer for GIA's internal issues - Kofi Abotsi

Lawyer Kofi Abotsi says the architect for the national cathedral Sir David Adjaye can not suffer for the internal issues of Ghana Institute of Architects, GIA.

Speaking on Joy FM, Kofi Abotsi said if per the documents read on news analysis show 'NewsFile' which indicated that Sir David Adjaye is registered with the Architects Registration Council, ARC and having an associate number from the Ghana Institue of Architects as at April 2018, then he is qualified to work in Ghana.

The Ghana Institute of Architects, GIA, last week said the principal architect at David Adjaye & Associates is unqualified to execute projects awarded his firm.

According to the Ghana Institute of Architects, the government has unfairly awarded 12 different contracts to the firm.

Speaking to Citi FM, Secretary to the Association of Architects, Augustus Richardson said, "If you look at the register which publishes yearly which has been published now 2019 you will see that David Adjaye is on the list of temporarily registered firms there is a problem there because he is not registered with Ghana Institute of Architects and when you read the law there are two things that you will need, your registration with the Institution and a payment of a fee....."

The GIA also blamed the absence of a board for the emerging issues, they added that at the process of awarding the new parliament chamber contract the name of David Adjaye was not in their register but the contract was still given to him.

A Ghanaian Architectural firm, Design and Associates Development Consortium, has also petitioned the President, Akufo-Addo, over possible bias in the award of 12 state projects to David Adjaye & Associates.

The architectural firm run by Sir David Adjaye has already courted controversy because of its work on the National Cathedral and the new Parliament complex.

Design and Associates argue that these two projects, in addition to others like the Marine Drive Master Planning, Trade Fair Centre redesign and the GNPC Accra Head Office, were not awarded fairly.

“Our concerns are premised on the total and absolute disregard and non-adherence to principles of transparency, fairness, equity and the laws governing the procurement of professional services by stature companies and bodies.”

The firm is raising concerns over Mr. Adjaye’s legitimacy to practice in Ghana because he is not a resident per the Architects Decree (NRCD 357).

But lawyer Abotsi explained that these regulations in the country for professionals are mostly to protect the market and help to control it.

According to him the rules for professional works must be followed strictly but David Adjaye should not be responsible for the internal issues of GIA.

"Regulatory bodies do not accept this but it is nothing but market protection, we give other reasons like understanding the local market and training all kinds of justifications which we use to rationalized it but the reality is that it is actually market protection, it allows you to control your market, it allows you to ensure that the local participant has enough projects and enough business, but the rules are the rules and if indeed certification as she indicated, licencing as the rules and requirement needed to be complied with, these are to be complied with strictly, if a licensure body issues a licence on the face of it ones the individual who applied for it was notified of that licence and he secures that licence that individual is allowed to take it on the face of it to be valid he is not under obligation to investigate whether administrative processes within whether structures within are gone through, he is presumed to have gone through the process therefore there is a presumption of regularity whatever licence he has been issued so if internally there are problems that is not his business, he is not bound by that and we are not going to compel him to suffer a liability becuase internally certain structures and processes have not been gone through...."