‘New consumer protection bill underway’
Federal government is set to enact a competition and consumer protection law that will enable businesses to operate more effectively in the Nigerian market place.
Minister of Trade and Investment Olusegun Aganga, stated this in Abuja on Thursday at the maiden edition of the Nigeria Consumers’ Award (NiCA) where NICON Insurance and 13 other providers of products and services emerged winners.
Others that won the NiCA award include GT Bank in the banking services, Nokia in the mobile phone accessories, Indomie in the food products, coca cola and star in beverage group, close up toothpaste in the personal care products, ABC Transport in transport services, Arik Airline in airline services, LG in the kitchen and electronics appliances, MTN in the communication service provider and NNPC filling station.
NiCA was organized by the Consumer Protection Council (CPC) to re-energize the Nigerian market-place for a healthy competition, which is capable of increasing consumer satisfaction from interactions between the consumer and provider of product and services.
Aganga who was represented at the event by Chief Samuel Ortom Minister of State for Trade and investment said government was poised to ensure that appropriate safeguards are being put in place to protect investors and consumers alike.
His words “citizens’ empowerment and well-being are key performance indicators of the Transformation Agenda of the present administration“.
This he said informed “the resolve to take to the National Assembly, in no distant future, a competition and consumer protection Bill“.
He believed that when passed into law, the bill will bring about a competition regime that will enable businesses to operate more effectively in the Nigerian market place.
“It will also enable the nation to harness the gains of privatization and deregulation, modernize the legal provisions for consumer protection in Nigeria and the same time build the required synergy between competition and consumer protection in the country“.
The Minister while stressing that appropriate safeguards are being put in place to protect investors and consumers, called on all players in the nation’s economy to contribute their quota to the growth of our national economy.
“Investors must be responsive to consumer preferences, while consumers must be patriotic enough to patronize Made-in-Nigeria products, “ he said.
Mrs. Patient Jonathan, the wife of the President in her remarks called on producers and service providers not only to take advantage of the large Nigerian market but ensure that decisions regarding products and services offered in the market place take into consideration the best interest of the consumer.
Mrs. Jonathan who was conferred with the award of consumer ambassador called on Nigerians to join forces in the task of promoting and protecting the right of consumers.
The First lady who was represented by Oloye Olajumoke Akinjide, Minister of State for Federal capital territory, reiterated her commitment to the cardinal principle of consumer protection.