By Franklin Alli & Providence Obuh,
LAGOS — The Standard Organisation of Nigeria, SON, weekend, raised alarm over the influx of substandard goods into Nigeria through the ports.
Acting Director General of SON, Dr. Paul Angya, said the country had become a dumping ground for unwanted products in Asia, Europe and America.
Speaking at a workshop in Lagos, Angya urged the Federal Government to fast-track SON’s presence at the nation’s ports in order to reduce the volume of substandard products coming into the country through the sea ports.
He also urged the Federal Government to use diplomatic channel to persuade the Chinese government to ensure that the same standards of goods that its companies produced for Europe and America were shipped to Nigeria. This, he said, will go a long way to checkmate the influx of sub-standard products into the country.
Angya said the new SON Act 14 of 2015 provided that SON must be at the ports and empowered it to designate special ports for a specific products such as electrical products.
He said: “But we cannot on our own go back to the ports without the Federal Government permitting the Nigeria Customs Service to admit SON back to ports.
“SON ports operations started in the 1980s. No specific law says at the time that it should be at the ports. The new SON Act now provides that SON must be at the ports if the Federal Government is to achieve its diversification effort.”
‘’It must act fast to stop the the dumping of substandard goods into the country. He said that dumping is systematically killing local initiative as well as industries,’’ he said.
Dr. Angya noted that 90 percent of imported products coming into the country were through the sea ports.
He said: “To stem it and revamp the economy, we need to stop it from coming in through the sea ports but by the act of previous government, SONwas asked to leave the ports and as a result of that we have no opportunity to verify the quality of 90 percent of containers coming into Nigeria through the sea ports.
“Out of the 90 percent, we are able to verify 30 percent of the containers by chasing them on the streets.”