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Outcry over rise of fake products in Nigeria

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By Abraham Adekunle

Nigerians took to social media to humorously expose fake items.

Nigeria witnessed a digital commotion last Monday night as its citizens took to numerous social media platforms. In a blend of wit and deep-seated worry, Nigerians expressed their distress about the widespread availability of counterfeit products in their local market. Notably, this online discourse, which featured not only celebrities but also ordinary individuals, highlighted the graveness of the issue, emphasizing both the health hazards and financial implications associated with these fake goods. Buju Benson, a well-known Nigerian artist, made a significant contribution to the conversation on December 17, 2023.

He passionately expressed his concern about the increasing presence of counterfeit and adulterated alcoholic beverages in nightlife venues. Buju emphasized the detrimental impact on people’s well-being and financial hardships experienced by unsuspecting customers. He greatly mourned the exorbitant costs incurred for what he considered to be excessively priced beverages. He urged establishments to prioritize consumer well-being, emphasizing, “Stop selling us fake drinks after spending so much money on the overpriced drinks. You are killing us.”

Even unusually suspected products were questioned.

Many individuals resonated with Buju’s plea for responsibility as numerous social media users nationwide recounted their personal experiences with fake products. One Twitter user, @unwiltedFK, uploaded a video unravelling a counterfeit producer of Milo drinks, thus bringing attention to the alarming prevalence of fraudulent items in our daily lives. Similarly, @Fajitakelly shared pictures exposing a deceptive Malta Guinness operation, shedding light on the deceitful act of replacing genuine cans with counterfeit replicas. In addition to beverages, @Fergies’Boy discovered a comical deception, replacing the well-known ‘four cousins’ drink on a store shelf.

Discussions on social media expanded into more sensitive areas, like questioning the legitimacy of the contraceptive product ‘Postinor 2.’ @Emlord aimed to address misconceptions about its efficacy, whereas @BenX, injecting a touch of dark humour, shed light on the perilous consequences of counterfeit sniper, a pesticide. @TheGreatest, an identifiable user, recently posted a compilation of counterfeit goods found in Nigerian marketplace. The user cleverly highlighted the contrasting details on the product labels, exposing them as unmistakable indicators of fraudulent items.

Demand for government agencies’ intervention.

This humorous yet eye-opening display resulted in a unified demand for governmental intervention and the active participation of regulatory institutions such as the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) to effectively combat the widespread existence of counterfeit products. On Monday, NAFDAC took action by apprehending counterfeiters who were engaged in producing counterfeit beverages at Eziukwu market in Aba, Abia state. The monetary value of the seized and eradicated fake goods exceeded ₦750,000,000, according to the Director-General of NAFDAC, Prof Mojisola Adeyeye.

Counterfeiters engaged in an array of unlawful deeds, encompassing the fabrication of phony beverages like wines, soft drinks, and various tainted merchandise. Among the extensive list of brands jeopardized by these malevolent activities were Seaman Schnapps, Hennessy, Four Cousins, Carlo Rossi, Jenney, Chelsea London Dry Gin, Schnapp Dry Gin, McDowell’s, Black Labels, Gordon’s, Martell, Campari, Smirnoff Ice, Eva non-alcoholic drink, Evra non-alcoholic drink, Cartel, and numerous others. Prof. Adeyeye underscored the scale of the endeavor, resulting in the shutdown of more than 240 shops-transformed-manufacturing units, where hazardous merchandise was both manufactured and promoted.

Numerous dangers are associated with consuming fake products.

The consumption of counterfeit products poses significant dangers due to the unsanitary conditions prevailing in these makeshift factories. These factories employ unhygienic water sources, harmful chemicals, saccharin, and cloned packaging materials, further exacerbating the risks. To address this issue, a thorough operation was conducted resulting in the destruction of over 1,500 cartons of counterfeit and substandard products. Additionally, ten individuals involved in this unlawful activity were apprehended and are now facing charges after an extensive investigation. The professor delivered a firm cautionary message concerning the detrimental effects on one’s well-being caused by the consumption of contaminated alcoholic beverages. She specifically highlighted a range of symptoms, including queasiness, retching, discomfort in the abdominal region, and the risk of organ malfunction. The esteemed professor also emphasized the imperative need to avoid methanol, a hazardous component commonly present in counterfeit vodka, as its ingestion may result in irreversible loss of vision.


Related Link

NAFDAC: Website


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AN-Toni
Editor
2 months ago

Outcry over rise of fake products in Nigeria. – Nigerians took to social media to humorously expose fake items. – Express your point of view.

Taiwo
Member
2 months ago

concern over the proliferation of counterfeit goods in Nigeria. On social media, Nigerians exposed phony products in a hilarious way. In Nigeria, phony goods have been widely available. This is regrettably still happening. Finding a long-term solution and increasing awareness of the issue are necessary.

Kazeem1
Member
2 months ago

Nigerian consumers should be concerned about the growth in counterfeit goods. The way Nigerians are playfully exposing these phony products on social media is commendable. Encouraging customers to use caution when making purchases and bringing attention to this problem are crucial.

Adeoye Adegoke
Member
2 months ago

I’ve definitely heard about the rise of fake products in Nigeria. It’s quite alarming and concerning. I think it’s great that Nigerians are using social media to humorously expose these fake items. It helps create awareness and puts pressure on authorities to take action against counterfeit products.
The spread of fake products not only deceives consumers but also undermines the reputation of legitimate businesses. It’s important for the government to strengthen regulations, increase enforcement, and collaborate with relevant stakeholders to combat this issue. By cracking down on counterfeit goods, we can protect consumers, support genuine businesses, and foster a culture of trust and authenticity.
It’s always good to stay vigilant and spread awareness to help others avoid falling victim to these scams.