Director General of Standard Organisation of Nigeria, Dr. Joseph Odumodu, has revealed that the agency is making effort to review the punishment for those found guilty of importing sub-standard products into Nigeria.
Shortly before the commencement of the South-West leg of the organisation’s Zero Tolerance Campaign in Ibadan on Tuesday, Odumodu said the campaign team would go round the South-West states with the target of getting five million campaigners in the fight against the spread of sub-standard products in the country. He also lamented the light penalty that the law spelt out for those who break the SON order, describing it as a way of aiding crime against humanity.
“The last time that the penalty for offenders was reviewed was 1990. The highest penalty is about N100,000 which is not enough to punish anyone who brings in fake products to Nigeria because such person is endangering the lives of the people,” Odumodu said.
“We are reviewing the punishment now. In the new bill which is before the National Assembly, we are pushing for lengthy jail term for offenders without option of fine. Most of the products involved are live-endangering. What these people are doing is crime against humanity. We are collaborating with all government agencies especially those at the border areas to check influx of these products,” he added.
The DG pointed out that importation of sub-standard products had massive negative impact on the economy, lives of the people and future of the nation’s youths.
“Sub-standard products pose a serious risk to our environment and economy. They dry up our employment reserve and endanger the future of our youths. We have had companies who folded up because we opened our doors and allowed all kinds of sub-standard products into our society to the disadvantage of indigenous companies. We embrace fake foreign products and refuse locally manufactured products. The truth is that many of the products made in Nigeria are better than the ones imported into the country. Most of the products we embrace in Nigeria are made only for export because they will not be accepted in the country where they are produced,” said Odumodu.