By FRANKLIN ALLI
LOCAL printers under the umbrella of the Chartered Institute of Professional Printers of Nigeria (CIPPON) have criticised the award of N2.6 billion voters’ cards contract by the federal government to a none registered member of the Institute.
The federal government recently announced the award of N2.6 billion permanent voters’ cards to Messrs. ACT Technologies Limited with a delivery period of seven months.
In a statement, President/Chairman-in-council of the Institute, Alhaji Wahab Muhammed Lawal, said the development contravenes Printers Act 24 of 2007 which specifies that companies must be registered with CIPPON before they can operate in the country.
According to him, the Institute has licensed security printing houses in the country, such as Nigerian Security Printing and Minting Plc, Academy Press Plc, Super Flux International Limited, Tripple Gee and Company Plc and others that can handle the permanent voters cards contract.
”The Institute appreciates the federal government for listening to the Institute’s professional advice and taking bold step to create employment through printing by patronage. The government is advised to always contact the Institute on matters pertaining to printing contract for better advise as also provided for by the Act that establish the Institute.
“The Institute shall take responsibility to address any challenges that may be hindering patronage to registered licensed printing houses in Nigeria, if highlighted by print buyers, governments, its agencies, book publishers etc.,” he said.
Giving further insight into the printers Act (No 24, 2007) which established the Institute, Lawal explained that CIPPON is charged with the duty of regulating, controlling, managing and administration of printers in Nigeria, and for related purposes. Consequent upon this, he added, “anybody who is not a licensed Professional Printer, but using the designation implying that he is authorized by law to practice as a Professional Licensed Printer, commits an offence, punishable under the law.”