By Miriam Humbe
Building materials merchants and dealers Association in Cross River State have been enjoined to join the Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) quality vanguard by dealing only on certified products.
SON Director General, Osita Aboloma gave the charge during a sensitization visit to the monthly general meeting of the association in Calabar.
Represented by the SON Cross River State Coordinator, Michael Ogbuji, the SON Chief Executive enumerated the objective of the visit as being to sensitize, enlighten and create greater awareness on standard practice and quality assurance requirements in the building materials sector.
He acknowledged the collaboration existing between the Association leadership and the SON and enjoined the members to pay attention during the interactions and endeavour to sustain the relationship. This according to him, will further the zero tolerance to substandard products in the building materials sector.
Mr. Ogbuji reminded the Association members of the critical nature of the building materials sector to the housing sector in particular and the economy of the Nation in general.
He admonished them to patronize and offer for sale only SON certified products. This he said will discourage importers and wholesale dealers of building materials from importing and stocking substandard and life threatening products.
He enumerated what the participants should look out for in patronizing good quality imported products as including; SONCAP Certification Logo, SON Registration number, brand name, country of origin, locational address, model, power rating among others.
For locally manufactured and imported products, he admonished them to look out for the MANCAP Certification and the Nigeria Industrial Standard (NIS) Logos in addition to other listed for imported products.
Ogbuji called specific attention to Products labelled as “Made for” as against “Made in” stressing that the former does not accept ownership and responsibility for the quality of such products.
He warned them to be wary of products with pasted labellings but to rather go for those with embossed inscriptions of country of origin, brand name etc.
The SON Cross River State Coordinator enumerated the various steps being undertaken by the organisation to tackle the incidence of substandard and life threatening products as including, onshore and offshore conformity assessment programmes for locally manufactured and imported products and imported products respectively.
Others according to him include regular market surveillance, standards enforcement and diligent prosecution of infractions relating to substandard and life threatening products.
He concluded by enjoining the Association members to avoid SON sanctions through strict adherence to quality requirements in the building materials they offer for sale to the public.
The association members enjoined SON to intensify its standards enforcement activities at the seaports and land border posts to prevent or reduce the importation of substandard building materials in addition to its surveillance activities within the country.
Responding, Chairman of the Association, Mr. Festus Mbonu commended the SON team for “the eye opening sensitization” and promised the cooperation of his members to assist SON achieve its mandate in Cross