The Ghana Standards Authority (GSA) has presented the Ghana Building Code to the 29 Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies in the Greater Accra Region to enable them to enforce the standards.
The exercise was to ensure adoption and use of the code, which was launched by Vice-President Mahamudu Bawumia in October last year.
The Code is a set of rules that specify the standards for constructed objects such as building and non-building structures. It covers all aspects of building and construction, ranging from soil testing, quality of building materials, roofing, fire-fighting to accessibility for persons with disability (PWDs).
It also provides guidelines on where to build, the materials to use, specifications for constructing exits, lifts and other essential components of buildings.
Presenting the copies to the MMDAS at a sensitisation programme, Professor Alex Dodoo, the Director-General of the GSA, urged the Assemblies to enforce the code to ensure that permits for buildings were only issued when they passed the quality test.
He also suggested the application of the code to assess all existing buildings to ensure that they were fit for occupancy and those that failed the assessment should be asked to retrofit to bring them to standards.
Prof. Dodoo said the enforcement exercise must begin with public buildings, including; places of worship and state institutions.
The sensitisation workshop for the top officials of the 29 MMDAs was held on the theme: “Decentralising quality infrastructure to facilitate trade and protect consumers.”
It was meant to educate the Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives (MMDCEs), Engineers and Technocrats on the building code and its implementation process.
Prof. Dodoo said the application of the standards in the code would guarantee public safety and create job opportunities along the value chain.
Mr Ishmael Ashitey, the Greater Accra Regional Minister, reiterated the call for strict enforcement of the building code to deal with the unplanned buildings, which were the result of weak regulatory and permitting regimes.
He expressed the hope that the enforcement would help improve access to public places and enhance service delivery.