Contractors, among other construction stakeholders, are vital in achieving the set goals of a project. Adequately engaging a capable contractor is an important task for a client. This study aims at determining the reasons for clients contending with contractors that are not committed to health and safety (H&S). The study was conducted through a literature review, a questionnaire was developed and distributed to 286 construction stakeholders in the Nigerian construction industry. Cronbach alpha was used to test the reliability of the questionnaire used for data collection. Mean scores (MSs) were adopted to determine the major factors that influence clients’ selections and factor analysis was used to cluster variables of high inter-correlations. Findings from the survey reveal that H&S is not a clients’ goal or a project value hence, H&S is not viewed as a vital pre-qualification criterion for contractor selection. This results in a poor checklist concerning contractors’ quality assurance and inadequate verification of contractors’ H&S history. Therefore, appointing non-compliant H&S contractors. The findings provide information on the influence clients have respecting H&S as a prequalification criterion and towards construction workers’ H&S. This will enable construction stakeholders to make the right decision in the pre-qualification of contractors.
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