By Yinka Kolawole
The Kano branch of Manufacturers facturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) has called for Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) to be properly positioned at the nation’s entry points following the commencement of the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) agreement.
National Vice President, North West Zone, MAN, Alhaji Ali Madugu, made the call in Kano when the Director General, SON, Mallam Farouk Salim was in Kano recently a working visit.
Madugu emphasised the need for SON’s quality verification of all imported products including those from West African countries, even with the rule of origin in the ECOWAS Trade Liberalisation Scheme.
According to him, the commencement of AfCFTA further underscores the need for SON’s presence at the entry points to prevent Nigeria from being turned into a dumping ground of substandard, fake and counterfeited products from other African countries.
He acknowledged the need for product authentication as an additional tool to fight faking, adulteration and unfair competition with substandard products in the market and urged SON to look at the best way to implement it without putting genuine manufacturers at disadvantage in terms of cost and the procedure for compliance.
Responding, Salim noted that SON was set up to provide technical assistance and support to genuine local manufacturers as well as protect them from unfair competition from substandard products. He acknowledged their sacrifices through investment in infrastructure, creation of job opportunities and regular payment of taxes as part of growing the nation’s wealth and assured them of his commitment and support.
His words: “We need to partner with MAN to protect genuine manufacturers and legitimate importers by sharing intelligence to apprehend and prosecute standards infractions. With adequate consequences for actions, most people will follow the rules.”