The Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) has given a six month ultimatum to manufacturers and importers to key into the new standards regulatory instruments of the agency.
The Director General of the agency, Dr. Joseph Odumodu who declared this recently, also said all existing certificates issued by the organization to operators have been invalidated following the launch of new quality logos by the organisation, at an extended stakeholders’ forum in Lagos, in furtherance of the campaign to stamp out of the country all sorts of fake and substandard products.
According to Odumodu, all existing products whether manufactured in the country or imported would be removed from the markets at the expiration of the six month’s grace period.
“We need to step up efforts in the on-going campaign to clean the Nigerian vast environment of life danger products. Let me say first and foremost, that our efforts over time have been geared towards attaining one goal: providing safety of lives and property through standard and quality assurance of goods and services. In doing so, we need to continually innovate new ideas and flow with the tide. We equally need to close gaps we have noticed in the system.”
He explained that the war against fake and substandard products across the length and breadth of the country is actually getting complex and has resulted to the introduction of four logos namely, Mandatory Conformity Assessment Programme (MANCAP), SON’s Conformity Assessment Programme (SONCAP), Nigeria Industrial Standard (NIS) Mark of Quality as well as Nigeria Quality Award (NQA), meant to provide a comfortable umbrella to members of the business community, which include manufacturers, exporters, importers, non-state actors as well as franchise or brand owners of products made Overseas but imported in Nigeria.
He urged consumers to be on the alert, warning that any product that does not carry the new MANCAP logo after the expiration of the six month’s grace period would be confiscated and removed by the agency’s officials.
Similarly, flour products received revised standards fortifications which according to the agency are meant to ensure that the health and safety of Nigerians especially the most vulnerable are safeguarded.
The SON boss declared that all the marks on the new logos unveiled by the agency are mandatory and backed by the law of the land, adding that operators who do not comply with the new regime would be sanctioned according to the appropriate laws.
In his reaction to the ultimatum, the President of Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN), Dr. Frank Udemba Jacobs pleaded with SON to give the manufacturers more time to adjust to the new measures, adding that some products already on the shelves have life span of two years.
Speaking further, Udemba said the launching of the four new logos was indeed a challenge for manufacturers in the country to maintain standard and quality requirements while he equally admonished consumers to be conscious of the products which they patronize.
He equally commended SON for setting a target for itself to reduce the level of substandard products to ten percent by the end of the year 2015, noting that this would make life better for Nigerians.
In his remarks, the Acting Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment, Alhaji Ajiya Mamman represented by Engr. (Mrs) Tawa Awobokun urged Nigerians to patronize locally produced goods, adding that, that was how China started.