Standard Organisation of Nigeria, SON, yesterday swooped into various warehouses in the ancient city of Kano in effort to stamp out substandard goods in the country.
The Standards Organisation of Nigeria’s Surveillance, Intelligence and Monitoring Unit, SIM, moved across suspected ware houses which were allegedly stocked with substandard African prints popularly known as “Atampa” of which 21 of those ware houses were sealed and textiles worth millions were put on hold until all relevant laboratory tests are concluded and analyzed to confirm the quality.
Coordinator of the SIM Unit, Mr. Isa Suleiman while speaking with newsmen after the raid, said the owners of the warehouses were flouting the law by stocking suspected substandard African prints that do not meet with the requirements of the relevant Nigeria Industrial Standards, NIS.
The standard he said, stipulates that African prints should be made of ‘100 percent cotton and must not be colour fast’ amongst other relevant attributes.
Initial surveillance according to him, revealed that the textiles being sold as African prints were materials suspected to have been manufactured with up to about 70 percent polyester and about 30 percent cotton.
Mr. Sulieman further said that some of the materials were suspected to be completely polyester which is at variance with the specifications of the Nigeria Industrial Standards.
He further stressed that SON will not allow the proliferation of substandard textile materials in the country, pointing at the negative effects such activities have had on the once buoyant textile industry in Nigeria and the attendant job losses.
Mr. Sulieman added that “the textile products found in the ware-houses were deemed not to have passed through the legal channels of entry but rather believed to have been either smuggled into the country or shipped in under false declarations at the ports of entry”.
In similar pattern, the SIM Unit team also sealed up six shops at the second largest phone market in Nigeria located at Beirut Road, Kano, the sealed shops were identified to be selling suspected substandard, counterfeit and unregistered cell phones. Like that of ‘Atampa’ SIM evacuated the products for further laboratory tests and analysis.
Some of the phone brands identified to be unregistered, possibly substandard and counterfeit were Infinix, TKK, Siccoo, Hom, and H-Mobile etc.
The SON, SIM team also spread its dragnet to the Emeka Offor Plaza at the Onitsha main market where it sealed up several shops dealing in suspected substandard and cloned phones, evacuating same for further tests and analysis.
Mr. Suleiman disclosed that all consignment of phones to be imported into Nigeria must mandatorily undergo the processes of SON off-shore conformity assessment, SONCAP, and the electronic product registration schemes.
These according to him was to avoid flooding the country with low quality or cloned phones that defy traceability and after-sales customer care of any known importer, manufacturer or brand owner.
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