A section of Alaba International Market, Electronics section, Alaba, Lagos.

Francis Ezem

The International Market Association (Electronics Section), International Market Alaba, has said that members of the association do genuine business and contribute substantially to the growth of Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product GDP.

Meanwhile the association has thrown its full weight behind the Standards Organisation of Nigeria SON over its efforts to rid the country of fake and substandard goods by enthroning a regime of globally accepted standards.

President of the association, Paulinus Ugochukwu, who spoke at a one-day sensitisation workshop organised by the SON recently in Lagos with the theme: “Promoting Self- Regulation to Eliminate Fake and Substandard Products from Nigerian Markets”, noted that the Alaba International Market remains the biggest single electronics market in Africa and therefore contributes substantially to the growth of the country’s GDP.

According to him, members of the association are genuine electronic product dealers while many have developed indigenous standards that compete with the foreign ones, contrary to insinuations in some quarters.

He noted that the association understands the benefits of the efforts being made by the organisation to rid the Nigerian markets of fake and substandard goods and has therefore collaborated with it in the past and will continue to continue to do more in the future.

It was therefore gathered that as part of efforts to stem the influx of fake foreign-made goods, the association had set up a committee that monitors such products in the market. This is in addition to seeking and obtaining the approval of the Director General of SON, Osita Aboloma to setup a joint taskforce that will monitor and raid the market at intervals.

“Alaba Electronics Market is known to be the biggest electronics market in Africa and going by this, it is not far-fetched to say that our contribution to Nigeria’s GDP is substantial and thus helping to build and grow the economy. This includes but not limited to the taxes we pay to the Federal, State and Local Governments, infrastructural development and creation of jobs within and outside our business community.

“I must however applaud the role and efforts of SON in sanitising and ridding this market of fake and substandard goods. As an association which understands and appreciates the benefits of the efforts of SON in ridding our country of fake and substandard goods and having collaborated with them in the past, we will still continue to collaborate with them. To this effect, we have instituted a committee, which duty is to ensure the prohibition of fake and substandard goods in this market.

“I wish therefore to use this medium to appreciate the efforts of SON once again in aiding our members to register for the Conformity Assessment Programme SONCAP. They have been extremely helpful and forthcoming. We also wish to plead for more time for those who have not been able to register for the programme to enable them do that”, the president said.  

He called on the Federal Government to revisit the issue of the border closure, which he said has prevented genuine producers of electronic products from reaching their customers in other African countries. He also made a strong case for improved electricity supply as well as improved road networks to the market.

The Director, Ports and Borders of SON, Engr. Yahaya Bukar, who spoke at the event, announced the setting up of a taskforce as earlier proposed by the association as part of efforts to rid the market of fake and substandard goods.

 “Substandard and fake electronic gadgets cause lots of hazards including, electrocution, deaths, injuries, loss of revenue, among others. We seek your contribution as worthy stakeholders in this fight against sub-standard products. We urge you to avoid noncompliant trade,” Yahaya said.