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Standards Organization of Nigeria (SON) @ 50

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By Mercy Kelani

SON provides proper testing platform for locally produced products.

The Director General of the Standards Organization of Nigeria (SON), Mallam Farouk Salim, at SON’s training for MSMEs and exhibition of MANCAP certified products, stated that SON is doing its best to ensure that locally made Nigerian products are able to favourably compete in the foreign market. To achieve this goal, SON has enforced programmes for capacity building for micro small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) accompanied with discounts, waivers, and products certification so that offered services and products can meet specified requirements of the standards and participate in a favourable competition in the international space.

During the exhibition, one of the activities which marked the 50th anniversary of SON, Dr. Richard Adewunmi – Marketing Director of SON – representing the Director General, added that in order to avoid rejection in the foreign markets, there is a provision of proper testing platform for domestically produced products. This is done by equipment of the agency’s engineering laboratories, the leather and textile laboratories in foods, the national metrology institute in Enugu, and chemical and electrical laboratories in Ogba, Lagos.

Ensure regular service delivery to factories and MSMEs.

In order to solidify the core mandate of the regulatory agency, the DG asserted that there is ongoing construction of new regional offices and rehabilitation of the old office buildings. The agency is also working in close relationship with state governments for provision of lands to construct offices and laboratories, to ensure regular service delivery to factories and MSMEs. There was also a recent commissioning of the Kano regional training facility for provision of training services for stakeholders in the North West. Likewise, very soon, it would commission in Bauchi State, North East regional office complex.

The establishment of SON started with an enabling Act No. 56 of December 1971, which was during the military era regarded as the Standards Organization of Nigeria cap 412 of the laws of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. However, the amended version of the Act, SON Act No. 14 of 2015, has given the agency more responsibilities, vesting them with the powers for conduction of search, arrest, prosecution and sealing up of facilities when they forsake its provision. In the Act, there is an increment of penalties for different degrees of violations pertinent to the goods and products in question.

Nigerian biscuits can compete favourably in the international space.

Concerning the Nigerian cable, Salim said that although it happens to be one of the best in the world, many manufacturers are not giving it the required visibility as international companies now stamp their own brand names on the Nigerian cables. Director of Lagos operations, SON, Talatu Etah, said that organization of the exhibition is to display some of the goods that now carry the MANCAP seals of the agency, celebrate them and make the public aware of the of the significance of the MANCAP seals on any locally produced product, encouraging companies who have not had such standardization to work towards getting it.

Compliance and Regulatory Affairs Manager of Flour mills, Nigeria, Ada Amogu, in her speech for the Food Industry, affirmed the efforts of SON in the standardization and regulation of the food sector, and hopes for improvement. Also, Blessing Onyeike, BTL Manager SUMAL Foods ltd, manufacturers of Yale Biscuits and others stated that before the establishment of SON, there was a lack of standards in Nigerian industries. Onyeike added that Nigerian biscuits can compete in the foreign markets as they are made with the finest ingredients.

SON receives two national recognitions on 50th anniversary.

Ambassador Mariam Y. Katagum, Minister of State Industry, Trade and Investment, attested to the fact that SON has been helpful in delivering the mandate of the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investments concerning the facilitation of trade and growth of the Nigerian industrial sector. The minister included in her speech that SON now ranks first in the Ease of Doing Business by the Presidential Enabling Business Environment Council (PEBEC) and has recently been awarded for Ease of Doing Business in the Information Technology Sector by the National Information and Technology Development Agency (NITDA).

Related Link

SON: Website

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