The Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) has impounded a large consignment of substandard tyre products valued at about N200 million.
Items in the two containers included stuffed tyres of various sizes as well as electrical parts, with brand names such as Ekovison, Ovation, lanvigator and Star tubes. However, the agency has vowed to continue the campaign of ridding the country of substandard products.
Director of Compliance, Engr Bede Obayi, said the seizure of the containers followed intelligence monitoring.
He said stuffing of tyres automatically destroys the tyres on arrival and that allowing such products into the country amounts to giving Nigerians tyres that would destroy their lives. He said technically, stuffing unnecessarily expands the tyres or unduly compresses them, bend the wires round the tyre helms, and create sharp points making them vulnerable to bursts on slight contacts, saying this should not be encouraged.
“We have told Nigerians the new DG of the SON has vowed there is no hiding place for those who deal in substandard products as they would be caught and their products confiscated. Today is an example,” he said.
He added, “As much as five tyres were stuffed into one, with many of them already squeezed and weakened, though looking new, and the possibility that once in circulation, consumers may in ignorant take their outward neat looking to mean they are healthy.
“Nothing here can be recouped no need to test anything because the tyres have already been destroyed on arrival. You can imagine the amount that would be going into the drains due to the greed of some people.”
A second container unveiled contained electrical products also suspected to be substandard products, with Obayi promising that the agency would continue to comb the nooks and crannies of the country fishing out suspected products.
He said the containers were not inspected by the SON, saying that containers were intercepted following intelligence reports and that its contents would be duly examined to ascertain what next.
According to him the SON would examine the containers to see whether it contained what was declared, as well as whether they comply with the requisite standards as prescribed by the statutes of the country.
Responding to the question of what the federal government was doing concerning China from which most of the substandard products were coming from; Obayi said the matter was being handled from the highest level of diplomacy, expressing the optimism that the desired result would be gotten at the end of the day.
Also on the need for the SON to be at the ports, Obayi said it was important as it would make the job of the agency easy.
According to him, it would obviously yield better results, checking consignments at the point of entry, rather than waiting for them to enter town and then start chasing them about.