As the country prepares for the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), the Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) has stated that it successfully obtained over 150 orders for the destruction of fake and substandard products from courts across the country in the last four years.
The Director-General of SON, Farouk Salim, during the organisation’s capacity building workshop for journalists in Abuja, yesterday, noted that the Federal Government and private sector are well prepared to take advantage of the trade deal.
Salim said the Nigerian government signed the trade agreement early this year based on its overall preparedness.
‘’I can assure you that our cement, other processing, and manufacturing industries are prepared, especially the legitimate ones in comparison to other African countries’’, he stressed.
Recall that AfCFTA became operational in early 2021 to promote Africa’s growth and economic development by championing citizens’ inclusion, increased coordination, and integration of African states.
He explained that Nigeria is hopeful that the country’s manufacturing and processing industries may end up feeding the whole of Africa with their products under the AfCFTA.
On the issue of SON returning to the nation’s ports for operations, Salim said the organisation is already working to return to the ports.
He Stated: ‘’We are working on a quick return to the ports; it is not a priority for us. Over the last eleven months, we have been working outside the ports and doing well’’.
Presenting a paper titled, ’’The legal framework towards delivering on the SON mandate,” its Director of Legal Services, Umaru Kawu, said: ‘’In the last four years, we have obtained over 150 orders from the courts to destroy sub-standard products across the country, but we are also, unfortunately, burning off dollars from such acts as the monies so far burnt as a result of the destruction of goods would have been better utilised for the development of the country’.
‘’Also, we successfully defended 99 per cent cases while we got only one per cent appeal of such cases between 2016 and 2021.
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