By Prince Okafor
MANUFACTURERS Association of Nigeria, MAN, has thrown its weight behind the plan by Standards Organisation of Nigeria, SON, to introduce a product authentication scheme, describing it as being in the collective interest of manufacturers and consumers alike.
President of MAN, Chief Franks Jacobs, gave the assurance during a consultative meeting with the Director General of SON, Mr. Osita Aboloma in Lagos. According to Jacobs, the introduction of such scheme to assure the quality of products on offer to consumers in Nigeria is long overdue given the negative economic effect of faking, cloning and counterfeiting, particularly on certified local products.
He decried the situation where a product is supposedly doing so well in the market without its manufacturer reaping the benefits of his investment due to faking, cloning and counterfeiting, while consumers also get short changed in the process.
The MAN president acknowledged the huge responsibility that the mandate of SON confer on the organization, particularly the need to assist local manufacturers excel on a continual basis, in order to grow the nation’s economy and provide gainful employment to its teeming youths.
He alluded to the need for all relevant agencies of government to harmonize their activities at the country’s entry points in order to effectively fight the influx of substandard products into Nigeria. Jacobs stressed that the continuous influx of substandard products into the country is negatively affecting MAN members in particular. This according to him underscores the need for SON’s active involvement in the execution of the recent Presidential Executive Orders, to ascertain the quality of all imports into Nigeria.
Speaking earlier, SON’s Director General, Aboloma, said MAN members are strategic stakeholders in standardization and quality assurance in Nigeria, which necessitated the consultative meeting at SON’s instance. He asserted that the products authentication scheme is to assist consumers confirm the genuineness of products before purchase and thus have value for their money. Other advantages of the scheme, according to him, will include assurance to genuine manufacturers and importers of their products on sale in the Nigerian market.
Aboloma stated that the product authentication scheme will effectively fight the cloning, faking and counterfeiting of genuine products by providing necessary information to guide consumers’ purchase decisions in the market.
“Without patronage, the purveyors of substandard, faked, cloned and counterfeited products would have no market for their products.” he said.