To Run, To Grow And To Transform
I am honoured and humbled for the respect you have bestowed up on me to lead the association on your behalf. My victory is your victory. May you keep your faith for it shall not be in vain.
May I congratulate all the officials who have been elected this year. Your audacity and the will to serve have been rewarded by the distinguished members of AAK. I am counting on your complete and undivided support to keep the wheels of the association rolling. I can only tell you “Umoja ni Nguvu.” Together we stand. The heat of the battle is as sweet as the Victory. This is just but the beginning of a two year long Journey. This is our time.
This is our time to run efficiently and put AAK at the centre of the map of professional associations. This is our time to grow AAK to the next level. This is our time to transform and bring Architectural practice to the digital age. There is a boom in real estate and we, whose knowledge and mastery makes it possible, are not at the table. Instead we wait by the table side for any crumbs that may fall. This is our time to have a fresh look with the eye of an eagle at CAP 525 to discover where the rain started beating us.
Our profession has been cannibalised. Is it true that Architects in the whole industry can only make drawings? But what is left? When we go back thousands of years ago when the Pharaohs of Egypt ruled the world and built the great pyramids which have defied time, go back to the Roman empire when the power of infrastructure was unleashed upon the world and all roads lead to Rome, go to Asia and behold the Taj Mahal and the timeless great wall of China. In those eras until recently the Architect was the land surveyor, the Architect was the engineer, the Architect was the quantity surveyor, the Architect was the interior designer, the Architect was the landscape architect, the project manager and ultimately the team leader.
So what is left for the Architects? When all these have been taken away under our watch? Statute after statute have created a new profession. Like soil erosion slowly but surely the fertile land lost its humus till all that is left is leached barren soil. It is our time to reform the law and reclaim our territory. We must open the space for Architects to diversify and thrive in all these areas without requiring fresh training, registration or change of carrier.
The 21st century will be the century of the customers and the constant feedback we get is that our fees are too high. Why are they saying the fees are too high yet we are languishing in aridity? How many of you earn full scale fees regularly? Why do we charge in percentage while what we sell is knowledge and time? Through research we can establish these facts. We can establish what the customers want and that is what we should put into legislation. My counter intuition is that we stand to make more money when customers are satisfied.
And why can’t we market our services when we all have websites? Which can reach millions worldwide. Is it the story of digital vs analogue? Are we conservative to the point of self destruction? Should we stand by and watch when our market share is getting eroded endlessly. If we do nothing fellow Architects we will be left with nothing. Even the leached soil is about to be grabbed.
Dear Architects it is held true that AAK is one association. Our founding fathers had intended that we should have one strong and large association for the built environment. Contrary to popular intuition the chapters have achieved the reverse of what they were designed to do. I dream of a unified AAK that will deliver us to the Promised Land. We not only need election reforms but we need to reform the whole body of AAK to instil fresh enthusiasm and members participation. To achieve these grand dreams I am counting on the support of each one of you. All it takes is the desire to change. The determination to start and the dedication to continue. Thank you. TOGETHER WE STAND!