Insecurity: FG urged to introduce SON in ports

The federal government has been urged to introduce the Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) in the nation’s ports to effectively check the influx of substandard products into the country.

Speaking with journalists in Ilorin, on Monday, when he led a team on an inspection visit to a steel manufacturing company in the state capital, the director-general of the SON, Farooq Salim, lamented that chasing substandard products all over the country rather than waiting for them at the ports and border stations has been challenging to the regulators.

This is just as the chairman of KAM Holdings, a leading steel manufacturing company, in Ilorin, Kwara State, Alhaji Kamoru Yusuf, made a case for the reintroduction of pre-shipment inspection of goods at the nation’s ports to check the proliferation of arms, substandard products and loss of revenue in the country.

The SON boss said that “It is important to note that non-involvement of SON at some ports in the country’s operations has continued to pose challenges particularly to the agency’s compliance and monitoring units.”

Salim, who said that it is only in Nigeria that the nation’s standard organisation’s directorate is not at the ports to authenticate goods brought into the country, added that “This is counter-productive to the economy of the nation.

“It is easier to fight the influx of substandard products at the points of entry than chasing them around all over the country in markets and warehouses, among others,” he added.

He also said that over 85 per cent of the products imported into the country daily, monthly or yearly come through the seaports and waterways, saying it would, therefore, be difficult to ignore the maritime sector operators in the quest for zero imports of substandard and unwholesome products, as well as the federal government’s ease of doing business policy.

Also speaking, Alhaji Yusuf asked SON to invest more in technologies that will help rid the country of substandard steel products.

He declared the preparedness of KAM Holdings to work with the SON in ensuring that standards are upheld in the iron and steel sector of the country.

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