By Ayo Fadimu
The Standards Organisation of Nigeria’s (SON) Director General, DG, Barrister, Osita Aboloma has sought for a better and efficient collaboration with Manufacturers and Importers Association in Alaba market and the Association of National Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA) to eliminate influx of substandard goods into the country.
Speaking during a strategic meeting with stakeholders in Lagos on Thursday, the DG, sought for the support of all the marketers and dealers of imported goods to guard against the influx of the fake, unbranded and sub-standard products in the markets.
Aboloma said that SON operations has improved with the automation of its operations, and that agency now operates more as a business facilitator than that of regulator.
The partnership according to SON, is apt and coming at a time when the agency has continued to receive numerous complaints from consumers, maintaining that the strategic collaboration would go a long way to reduce the influx of substandard goods to the barest minimum.
In his words, if you are recognised as being a standard ambassador, people will have more confidence in your products. You will have traceability of your products. Quality and standards keep evolving and we need continuous feedback from you. We need you to be quality vanguards. We want to rekindle our relationship, emulate your neighbours, the Electrical Dealers Association of Nigeria (EDAN) establish a SON desk in your market, bring quality assurance closer to you people. This is what I propose. We want you to come with us to sensitise other markets where they sell electronics to let them know what they need to do by conforming to standards. It is going to be a win-win situation because your turnover will increase.”
He urged the association to be abreast with the agency’s innovation and development.
He added that the standards body has automated its clearing processes for effective service delivery while also reducing human interference and reduction in turnaround time
“Our automation is flawless, it reduces the turnaround time for clearing. The automation in respect to product registration and pre-shipment document (SONCAP) have all been automated. So if somebody informs you that he incurred demurrage because of SONCAP, that is a deliberate move to misinform the public. You cannot even ship your products into the country without securing some kind of product registration. It makes the process of clearing goods seamless without compromising the quality of goods coming into Nigeria,” he added.
Speaking further he said that the Electrical Dealers Association of Nigeria [EDAN]’s collaboration with SON has been so fruitful, and would like other associations like the International Market Association of Electronics (IMAE), Alaba International Market, Lagos to also urge their members to collaborate with SON to eradicate the menace of fake products.
The Executive Chairman, Alaba Electronics, Paulinus Ugochukwu, stated since his assumption of office as the Executive Chairman, it has not been business as usual for electronic dealers, saying that his administration is working hard to bring back the glory days of Alaba International market.
He urged electronic dealers to establish their own brands, saying that the established local brands are doing very well in the market while also competing with foreign brands.
He pledged to work partner SON to bring to an end to fake and substandard products tarnishing the image of Alaba international market.
“We will engage in sensitization programmes to encourage these dealers to produce their own brand going forward,
Also, the National Executive committee (NECOM) of the Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA) led by the National President, Iju Tony Nwabunike yesterday visited the Director General of the Standards Organization of Nigeria (SON) to discuss operational matters and way forwards based on existing mutual relationship.
Also speaking at the event, the National President, ANLCA, Iju Nwabunike, said the association is looking forward to continually support the government through all lawful means within its capacity, while demanding continuous compliance orientation, training and seminars of its members to help SON achieve its goals and objectives.
He commended SON’s automation processes, saying that it has helped to achieve seamless cargo clearing activities.