Africa

Constructing or Re-Constructing Africa

Read This: Maiden Africa Construction Development Conference opens on Thursday.

By Ghana News Agency.

My thoughts:

So necessary. It’s about time we took construction development in our nations into our own hands in a very collective effort rather than relying on China (especially) and the West to determine what our cities and villages should look like. Besides, the Chinese have a very ignominious record of constructing buildings sub-standard with cheap materials,(some of which have records of crumbling by the way), making refurbishments in the short-term highly necessary. They also are known for employing Chinese constructing workers and not collaborating with local construction companies on the grounds that the expertise or skill is not there. This inadvertently means more cost both time-wise and economically. Again, all these problems validate why Ghana’s new law stating that construction work contracted out to Chinese must be in collaboration with local construction workers, in order to create employment and of course, for quality control purposes. I personally think its a powerful and good move by the government. 🙂 (Read Don’t bring expatriates, employ Ghanaians!)

Sometimes I marvel how our perception of development is enshrined in seeing Western-type buildings and sky-scrapers tower our skylines. For me, those buildings are symbolic of the enclosed spaces colonialism put us in, mentally and philosophically. I am no architect and perhaps do not understand the feasibility of the structures i propose but I really long for an African model of development where we are so authentic and true to our culture with distinctive African architecture. I do not know what that will mean aesthetically or how that will translate practically but I am of the view that once we give it a thought, we can create our own signature when it comes to architecture and development. I am excited about conferences like this. Hopefully the discussion will manifest itself in novel ways!

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