Lagos - The Standards Organization of Nigeria (SON) said on Tuesday that it destroyed substandard goods worth N5 billion in the first 11 months of 2014.
The Head, Inspectorate and Compliance of SON, Bede Obayi told journalist during the destruction of some of the goods at the agency's dumpsite in Shagamu, Ogun that they were impounded from several locations in the country.
He said that most of the goods found their way into the country through unapproved routes along the borders in different parts of the country.
Obayi noted that despite the series of enlightenment campaigns organised by the SON to educate the citizenry about the harmful effects of these products, importers, especially smugglers, have continued to indulge in the illicit trade.
According to him, the sub-standard products destroyed include electronics, armored cables, tyres, expired supermarket breakfast cereals, extension sockets, mini-led flashlights, rechargeable lamps, shaving sticks, mobile phones, stabilizers, engine oil, and ball pens.
"We are destroying this huge volume of goods that have created jobs for people overseas. Unfortunately, by the time we destroy these goods, we get nothing but economic loss.
“ We are not happy destroying these products, but if we can save the life of one Nigerian by doing this,, we would have done something for this country and this is exactly the core mandate of our agency by showing zero tolerance for substandard goods," he added.
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Obayi said that the current administration would continue to show commitment to its zero tolerance policy on fake and sub-standard products, including those produced in Nigeria.
"These goods were destroyed to save the lives of Nigerians who are not aware of the harmful effect of these products. So many people have lost their loved ones by consuming these substandard products.
“We want to use this opportunity to beg Nigerians, especially the genuine importers, to always insist on doing the right thing, by working together with the authorities, to get the right minimum requirements to import goods into the country.
“We want to also commend the media for being the vanguard of our enlightenment campaigns and we will continue to fight until only goods that meet the minimum requirements are paraded in our markets."
Obayi said that the destruction was carried out in accordance with SON’s procedure which started with market survey, surveillance, inventory, seizure, sampling, laboratory tests and analyses to ascertain conformity to specifications and requirements of Nigeria Industrial Standards (NIS).
"Today’s exercise is therefore the culmination of a rigorous process to ascertain the quality of each product with the sole objective of improving lives through standards by protecting all of us consumers against the hazards associated with the distribution, purchase and use of substandard products,” he said.