The Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) has destroyed four truck loads of substandard electric cables, saying that should the cables filter into the market, it could burn down buildings and wrecka lot of havoc on Nigerian lives and properties.
SON reaffirmed its zero-tolerance for substandard products, even as unscrupulous importers continue to indulge in illicit business despite the agency’s numerous sensistisation programmes on the negative impact of substandard products.
The Director, Inspectorate and Compliance, SON, Engr. Obiora Manafa who was speaking at the destruction site in Lagos yesterday, explained that these substandard electric cables with no economic value pose dangers to both lives and properties of Nigerians.
In his words, “These cables can do a lot of harm to the economy at large. These cables were seized from importers who stock them in their warehouses. We are currently destroying four truck loads of substandard electric cables, while the other ones we seized are undergoing court processes and will be ready for destruction anytime we get the court orders.”
According to him, these cables failed the conductor and insulator resistance parameters and as such, they are unsafe for use.
He added,” This is why we do not want them to get into any home. It is our responsibility in SON to protect lives and property of Nigerians. It is our responsibility to ensure that these goods do not enter the market, because there are critical parameters in the standards namely conductor resistance and insulator resistance. These cables failed the standards woefully. These are cables that when you use them and you return from work and see your house burnt to the ground. These cables are so dangerous that you do not see them burning and if you are not there or in the middle of the night, your house is burnt. We will not allow that and it is our responsibility in SON to ensure lives and property are ensured.”
He stated that standard for conductor resistance is 12 Ohms, but stated these substandard cables gave over 1000 Ohms after going through its laboratory test.
“We are not happy that we are destroying these goods, because it is a loss to the owner and the nation, but we have the mandate to protect the lives and property of Nigerians even if it is only one life of a Nigerian. These cables are very dangerous in the sense that the conductor resistance which must be 12 Ohms, but you see these cables giving 1000 Ohms, but the maximum is 12 depending on the size. You can imagine people bringing 1500 Ohms to kill Nigerians.
We are destroying them using burning and cutting. The ones that will not impact the environment adversely, we burn them because we do not want to pollute the environment,” he said.
He reiterated that made-in-Nigeria cables are the best because they comply strictly to the requirements of the standard.
“Although many imported cables comply to the standards, but there are some Nigerians who go out there despite our level of sensitisation, import fake cables. At times they bring in faked made-in-Nigeria cables,” he stressed.
He advised consumers to always look out for made-in-Nigeria cables with MANCAP logos while for imported products, look out for SON’s registration numbers.
“If you are in doubt you can also make a call to the nearest SON office to verify if these cables are genuine or not. Consumers can also visit our website to verify any information they need”
“Some of the cables claim that they are 100 per cent copper, but they are not. They are copper coated cables, some of them are iron and that is why their conductor resistance is very high. They do not allow free flow of current and once the restriction is present, it will start generating heat because of friction which later translates to fire,” he advised.
“These cables have failed the safety and performance requirements and even the market requirements because some of them are fake cloning existing well known brands. The cables were intercepted in the warehouses in Lagos courtesy of our surveillance exercise,” he added.
The Director General, Nigeria Copyright Commission (NCC), John Asien, represented by a Director, Lagos Directorate, NCC, Matthew Adeojo, at the destruction exercise, said NCC would be increasing its level of synergy with SON to stamp out substandard goods in the country.
“We are here synergise with our sister agency SON in the process of destroying counterfeited cables imported by unscrupulous importers. We would increase the level of our surveillance while policing our ports to ensure that these goods do not find their ways into the country, because they are not fit for consumption,” he said.
He noted that its inter-agency collaboration with SON has been fruitful over the years, reaffirming its support to SON in its bid to bring down the level of substandard good in the nation.
He urged Nigerians to do things the right way by indulging in genuine businesses, saying that as a result of the importation of these fake cables, many houses have been burnt and many lives lost.
In her remarks, the Enforcement Officer, National Environmental Standards and Regulations Enforcement Agency (NESREA), Anyanime Ibah, commended SON for adhering strictly to NESREA’s sustainable destruction measures.
“We are here to ensure that SON is destroying these fake cables in an environmentally safe manner because they contain hazardous substances that are harmful to human health.We have been working with SON over the years providing advisory services on sustainable destruction measures and so far they have been complying with our regulations in their destruction processes,” she averred.